STGH – fourth most under-pressure emergency department in 2019

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South Tipperary General Hospital.
Image of South Tipperary General Hospital by RustyTheDog [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

South Tipperary General Hospital (STGH) has featured in the top four hospitals found to have had the highest numbers of people on hospital trolleys across the country.

2019 was the worst year on record for hospital overcrowding, according to the INMO’s end-of-year figures.

118,367 people went without hospital beds in 2019 – 9% more than any other year. Over 1,300 of the patients were children younger than 16.

The worst months for overcrowding in 2019 were November, October, and September.

The worst-hit hospitals in 2019 included University Hospital Limerick with a total of 13,941, Cork University Hospital with 11,066 and University Hospital Galway where 7,993 people were without a bed.

In fourth place was South Tipperary General Hospital with 6,942 patients waiting for beds, while University Hospital Waterford was next with 6,313.

The INMO points to understaffing and a lack of capacity as being the key drivers of overcrowding.

The organisation also noted that there are 411 fewer inpatient beds in Ireland’s hospitals today than a decade ago, despite a larger, older population.

The INMO also said that while overcrowding used to be a winter problem, this is no longer the case. The organisation maintains that it is a year-round problem, which gets worse in winter.