Overcrowding and weather - Tullamore Hospital explains cancellation of surgeries
Surgery and day case procedures can be cancelled at the Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore (MRHT) to cope with a jump in the number of people at the hospital's Emergency Department, according to the HSE.
Responding to claims day case and elective surgeries have been cancelled, the Dublin Midland Hospital Group (DMHG) said steps have been taken because of overcrowding and other factors.
The Irish Hospital Consultants Association claimed cancellations were happening at a number of hospitals, including Tullamore, in to reduce their trolley numbers.
A spokesperson for the hospital said the Tullamore hospital is the regional centre for Orthopaedics, ENT, Oncology, Haematology and Renal services for the Midlands and its environs. It was stated that the number of day cases undertaken to the end of November 2018 was 30,469 - an increase of 1.6% on the same period last year.
The spokesperson said that day case and elective surgeries can be cancelled for a number of reasons.
"While MRHT has experienced a slight drop in inpatient discharges over this period (-1.6%), attendances to our Emergency Department increased by 5.3 %. Cancellation of scheduled day case and elective procedures can occur in order to cope with such increases in acute presentations to the Emergency Department.
"There were also significant weather events in 2018 which resulted in the cancellation of non-urgent scheduled day case and elective procedures during the period.
"The Midland Regional Hospital Tullamore always endeavours to avoid cancelling patient treatment and strive to reschedule cancelled patients as quickly as possible," said the DMHG statement.
Many patients who cannot be treated in Portlaoise are sent to Tullamore. The Dublin Midland group also includes Naas General, Tallaght and St James in Dublin.