Trolley problem eases in Portlaoise but remains acute elsewhere and nationally.
Trolley usage fell significantly overnight in Portlaoise hospital after almost doubling in the space of 72 hours, while the number of people waiting for beds at its sister hospitals remains high.
Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation figures for Thursday, January 11 show that there were just two trollies deployed in the Emergency Department (ED/A&E) of the Midland Regional Hospital, Portlaoise.
The figure also means that the Laois hospital had the lowest number of trollies of any acute facility in the country with an Emergency Department. The HSE wants to close the A&E in Portlasoise.
In Portlaoise, on Wednesday, January 10 there were 22 people temporarily accommodated on trollies while waiting for a hospital bed. All were deemed in need of admission. There were 18 waiting on Tuesday and 12 on Monday.
Meanwhile, the numbers also remain high at Portlaoise's sister hospitals in the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group. There were 28 people waiting in Tullamore hospital while Tallaght needed 29 trollies. The number required at Naas doubled to 20 while there was a 100% increase to 16 trollies at the country's biggest hospital - St James' in Dublin.
Nationally 544 trollies had to be used on Wednesday - 389 in Emergency Departments and 155 on wards. The main hospitals in Limerick, Galway and Cork cities were worst affected on Thursday - Limerick had 53 people waiting for a bed.
The HSE has advised that the impact of influenza is likely to increase this week and peak.