Galway hospitals cancel all non-urgent appointments

By Oisín McGovern

Galway hospitals have cancelled “all but very urgent” appointments and surgeries.

The cancellations are to ensure they have the necessary capacity to deal with coronavirus.

The Saolta Hospital Group – which controls University Hospital, Galway, Merlin Park and Portiuncula – said that all but very urgent inpatient, day surgery, diagnostic tests and outpatient appointments are cancelled from today.

Hospitals across the country are preparing for an increase in confirmed cases of Covid-19, which currently stands at 169.

A spokesperson said: “A small number of urgent cancer and time-critical procedures, appointments or tests will proceed. Patients have been notified if their appointment or procedure has been cancelled.

Also, ask those patients who are attending not to bring anyone with them unless it is absolutely necessary and children are not permitted to attend with patients.”

“We regret the impact that these deferrals will have on our patients but they are necessary in order to deal with the impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19).”

“We are again reminding the public not to visit any of our hospitals other than the end of life situations and other exceptional circumstances as agreed with the ward manager in advance of visiting.

To arrange a visit, families should telephone the hospital and request to speak to the relevant ward manager who will decide if a visit can be facilitated without compromising the welfare of the patients on the ward.”

The INMO has said there are no patients waiting on trolleys in UCHG today.

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