Further 40,600 people added to hospital waiting lists in the past year

Another 40,600 people were added to the hospital waiting list last year, according to a recent report by the National Treatment Purchase Fund (NTPF).

About 879,000 are on the waiting list, of which 96,000 are children.

Statistics show that 114 people were added to the daily waiting list for hospitals in 2021, with a 100% increase in the waiting list for outpatients and patients in other public hospitals.

The number of hospitals on the rise in the waiting list for 2021 includes Cork University Maternity Hospital (101 percent), Coombe Women & Infants Hospital (30 percent), St John’s Hospital, Limerick (28 percent), St Columcille’s, Loughlinstown. (24 per cent), Cork University Hospital (24 per cent) and Mayo University Hospital (22 per cent).

‘Unauthorized waiting lists’

According to the Irish Hospital Consultants Association (IHCA), more waiting lists are coming in when one of the five medical consultants remains vacant or is temporarily filled.

Commenting on the latest NTPF statistics, IHCA President Professor Alan Irvine, said:
“More people were expecting medical care by the end of 2021 than at the beginning of the year, even though the government had developed a four-month plan to address the problem.

“These waiting lists are not being managed fast enough and the poor performance in the last year is very high.

“Unfortunately, due to the recent increase in Covid cases, overcrowding in our emergency departments and the removal of essential care and patient enrollment time, there is no hope that the waiting list will be managed soon.

This is not good enough, despite the challenges we are facing in the recent Covid era.

He added: “114 people are being added to the daily waiting list in this country – a miracle we cannot ignore and we must put it first.

Worse still, because of the problems that occur in this system, some of these people will be misdiagnosed as ‘slow-moving’ cases and their pre-arranged responsibilities have been removed.

“Their condition will be very difficult and difficult to treat while waiting – often in the form of pain, suffering and the stress of not knowing when they will receive care.

“It is imperative that Minister Stephen Donnelly make the” unconditional commitment “he has made over and over again to recoup the remuneration of all Advisers made since 2012.

“This is essential if public hospitals are to recruit and recruit qualified professionals who are required to fill five permanent vacancies throughout the country that are vacant and to fill temporary vacancies.”

‘Dangerous’

Sinn Féin’s health spokesman David Cullinane said he was concerned about the high number of people on the waiting list for hospitals.

He called on the Minister of Health to expedite the drafting of the Waiting List and the HSE National Service Plan 2022.

“The waiting lists are very high, and the health profession needs a lot of money and flexibility,” Cullinane said.

“We need to see a detailed plan for 2022, which has not yet been published even though we have two weeks to go until the new year,” he added.

“The Ministry of Health must show leadership and take action to address the waiting list. It must publish its plans.

“The delay in rolling out the long-awaited schedule and the 2022 global service plan shows a lack of urgency.”


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