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Health Officials urge the public to consider all care options this Easter

As we look forward to the Easter weekend, our Emergency Departments continue to be extremely busy with high numbers of patients attending who require admission.

Health Services in the West and North West are asking the public to bear with us as we prioritise those in need of urgent and emergency care.

The Easter break can be a busy time for our hospitals and emergency services. This means that patients who attend EDs for routine and non-urgent treatment will experience very long waiting times over the coming weekend. Every effort is being made to discharge patients who are ready to go home so that beds will become available for patients who need to be admitted, at the earliest opportunity.

Health staff across our hospitals and community settings will continue to work together over the weekend to ensure all available beds across the hospital and community are in use.

Patient safety is at the forefront of everything we do and staff prioritise to ensure critical need is met. We regret that any patient has experienced long wait times. As always, people who do require emergency care are encouraged to attend EDs where they will be prioritised.

You can help our staff at this busy time by considering other options for non-emergency care such as Injury Units, Out of Hours GP and pharmacies before attending an ED.

Tony Canavan, CEO of the Saolta Group said: “Our hospitals remain incredibly busy and I acknowledge that these delays are very difficult and unacceptable for patients and their families. We are working closely with our community colleagues to ensure that every available resource is mobilised and utilised to respond to the needs of our patients who are seeking urgent and emergency care.” 

Dermot Monaghan, Chief Officer Community Healthcare Cavan, Donegal, Leitrim, Monaghan, Sligo added: “If you urgently need to see a GP out of hours please contact your local out of hours healthcare provider. The GP out-of-hours service is for patients needing urgent medical care and we are encouraging the public to consider Out of Hours GP and pharmacies before attending an ED.”

Breda Crehan-Roche, Chief Officer Community Healthcare West added: “The GP out-of-hours service is for patients needing urgent medical care.  It is not a substitute for the Emergency Ambulance Service who are the appropriate service to deal with medical emergencies where they arise.”

Dr Regina Kiernan, Consultant in Public Health Medicine for Public Health Area F: “Healthcare settings continue to be busy this Easter with respiratory illnesses circulating in the community. Those who are seriously ill and require emergency care should of course come to hospital, but we would urge others to consider seeking support from pharmacists, GPs, GP Out of Hours Services and Minor Injury Units. We want everyone to keep well while protecting the most vulnerable parts of our population. We are asking everyone to ensure that they are up to date with their COVID-19 and flu vaccines. Check the HSE website for information on those vaccines or call HSELive.”

Information on how to manage common illness and advice on when to get emergency help is available from

The HSE’s mychild website also has lots of information regarding childhood illness and viruses.


The article above is specific to the following Saolta hospitals:: 
All Hospitals