Daisy Hill’s A&E under pressure from non-emergency patients
According to Daisy Hill Hospital, the number of people attending the Hospital’s Emergency Department has increased significantly in recent weeks. Over the course of a recent weekend, the number of people attending the Department was approximately 20% higher than would be expected over a normal weekend. There has also been a marked increase in the numbers of acutely ill patients.
The hospital has spoken of the huge importance that only those people with emergency conditions should attend the Department. The busy Department continues to provide care and treatment to patients. But the public can play a significant role in helping to ease the burden. Mr Conor O’Toole, Consultant in Emergency Medicine at Daisy Hill explained to Newry Times, “Staff in Emergency Departments are there to provide specialised treatment for people who are seriously ill or injured and need to be treated urgently. Too often, we find our time and resources taken up by people whose ailments are neither serious nor urgent.”
Mr O’Toole continued, “We hope that by emphasising the Emergency nature of the treatment provided, it might prompt more people with non-urgent/minor ailments to ask themselves if they really need to come here. Our aim is to provide the quickest and most effective emergency treatment to those people who need it most. We assess each individual patient and prioritise those patients with the most severe conditions. People who are assessed as having non-emergency conditions will have to wait until patients with more urgent conditions are given the treatment they need.”
Mr O’Toole reminded people about the other options available. “GPs (or GP Out of Hours), and local pharmacists all provide non-emergency treatment in the community and I would urge people, where appropriate, to use those services instead.”
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