Nearly 150 people forced to wait for a bed at Portlaoise hospital this week

Number waiting almost the same as the bed capacity of the entire hospital

Conor Ganly


Conor Ganly


150 patients left waiting in Portlaoise.

Nearly 150 people have had to wait for a bed at Portlaoise hospital in the past week as staff tried to cope with a surge of patients presenting to the hospital's Emergency Department.

Since Monday, January 16 to Friday, January 20 the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation trolley watch figures show that there were 149 people on either trolleys or on wards.

The majority of patients - 115 - had to wait on a trolley in the A&E before being admitted for treatment. The remainder of patients left waiting were accommodated on wards at hospital.

The number waiting almost exceed the Health Service Executive's official figure of 151 beds available at the the Midlands Regional Hospital, Portlaoise. The hospital takes patients from Laois, Offaly, Kildare, Carlow and Tipperary. 

Portlaoise had bigger issues than any of the other hospitals in the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group which includes hospitals in Tullamore and Naas as well as Tallaght and St James' in Dublin.

There was a slight easing of pressure in Portlaoise by Friday morning when there were 25 people waiting. The INMO figures show that there were 19 on A&E trollies and six patients on wards.

On the same day, Tullamore had 18 patients waiting while, Tallaght hospital had 15 with just two patients on trollies. St James' had 11 patients on trollies but Naas hospital had just two people in A&E.