October 19, 2021

Urgent action demanded over UHW overcrowding

Local Fianna Fail TD Mary Butler has met with Junior Health Minister to demand urgent action on the overcrowding situation at the Department of Psychiatry at University Hospital Waterford.

Ms Butler and Fianna Fáil spokesperson on Mental Health James Browne sought an urgent meeting with Minister Jim Daly after photos emerged last month of patients sleeping on chairs and on the floor.

Last weekend, psychiatric nurses held a protest outside UHW to highlight the overcrowding.

Staff at the facility have described as “intolerable” for both the patients and the people who work there.

“Since coming to office, Minister Daly has not once visited the Psychiatric Department at UHW,” Ms Daly said following the meeting.

“However, I have received a commitment from him that he will come to the unit to see first-hand the conditions there.

“While I welcome this promise, I am not overly confident that his party have the will to follow through and make the changes needed to bring this unit up to standard.

“Promising to discuss a corrective plan with the HSE does not go far enough.  The time for talking about a plan has long passed, urgent action is needed.

“I have met and spoken with three residents who were in the unit this year and they all confirmed that overcrowding with patients sleeping on the floor is an ongoing issue and was not unique to the Bank Holiday weekend.”


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