In early January all but very urgent and time critical inpatient and day surgery was curtailed across the hospitals in the Saolta group including Sligo and Roscommon University Hospitals.
In an update statement Saolta have said “In light of very significant pressure in the hospitals caused by COVID-19 and high community infection rates, it is now necessary to continue the current restrictions to ensure patient safety and wellbeing. The deferrals are in place for a further two week period and will be kept under review”.
The spokesperson added: “We understand that these deferrals may be disappointing and frustrating for patients but this is an important measure to enable the hospital to maintain critical and emergency services. There are many very sick people in our hospitals at the moment and the incidence of COVID-19 in the community remains a significant concern”.
“Outpatient clinics will also be restricted however some clinics will take place virtually unless it is absolutely necessary for patients to be seen. Patients are being notified directly if their appointment is deferred, we apologise for the inconvenience this may cause, please bear with us as we all hold firm”.
“Visiting restrictions remain in place at the hospitals. Members of the public should not visit a hospital except on compassionate grounds and these visits must be arranged in advance with the nurse manager on the ward”.
“The hospitals continue to be extremely busy, the public are reminded to only attend the Emergency Department in case of emergencies. Please contact your GP during normal surgery hours or your local out of hours service if your health problem is not an emergency.”
*The Saolta University Health Care Group is comprised of University Hospital Galway, Merlin Park University Hospital, Portiuncula University Hospital, Roscommon University Hospital, Mayo University Hospital, Sligo University Hospital (including Our Lady’s Hospital Manorhamilton) and Letterkenny University Hospital.