The cancellation of almost all elective surgeries and outpatient appointments across all six sites of UL Hospitals Group is to be extended for a further day to Wednesday, March 11th, the HSE has confirmed.
In a statement, a spokesperson said: “The Group regrets having to extend this reduction of service into a third day, after outpatient appointments and elective procedures were cancelled for Monday and Tuesday of this week.
A visitor ban will also remain in place this Wednesday, March 11th, at University Hospital Limerick, University Maternity Hospital Limerick, and Ennis, Nenagh, St John’s and Croom Hospitals.
The UL Hospitals Group crisis management team has extended the measures in the interests of patient and staff safety, and the group regrets any inconvenience or distress caused to those patients who are affected by the cancellations. Those patients will be rescheduled at the earliest opportunity.”
There are a number of exceptions where appointments are still going ahead this Tuesday and Wednesday:
– Dialysis (UHL)
– Cancer services (oncology and haematology day ward; haematology and oncology OPD clinics; medical oncology clinics; Ward 4B appointments) (UHL)
– Ante-natal clinic; diabetes in pregnancy clinic; elective c-sections (UMHL)
– Cardiology diagnostics (UHL)
– OPAT (antibiotic therapy) (UHL)
– Radiology outpatients (UHL)
– Fracture Clinic (UHL)
– Paediatrics: oncology/radiology day case/diabetes education (UHL)
A limited number of other urgent outpatient appointments will be called directly by staff to confirm the appointment.
UL Hospitals Group CEO, Colette Cowan, said: “We sincerely regret having to reduce services across our sites. However, patient safety is our highest priority and as part of a number of actions in that regard, it is necessary to reduce activity and prioritise services for our sickest patients.”
“We have entered a challenging period, one for which our staff have been preparing for several weeks, and we are now putting those plans into effect. We ask that members of the public help us in our efforts, by observing the visitor ban in our hospitals, by attending the Emergency Department at UHL only when necessary; by following relevant public health advice from reputable sources; and taking simple precautions to protect themselves, their loved ones and our community at large.”