Frank O’Rourke TD has reacted angrily to the news that 690 patients Over 75 enduring 24-hour waits in the Accident & Emergency Department of Naas General Hospital

Over 10,000 waited longer than 24 hours in an Emergency Department across the country so far in 2019 

Frank O’Rourke TD has said that the statistics are unacceptable and that waiting a full day in an emergency department is gruelling for a person in the full of their health let alone an elderly person who is experiencing ill-health.

                                                Naas Hospital

Frank explained, “Across the country more than 10,000 over 75’s have been forced to wait over 24 hours before being admitted or discharged from an emergency department so far in 2019. In Naas General Hospital alone this figure stands noticeably high at 690.”

“As we approach the winter months it’s inevitable that this number will only continue to rise. A lack of basic bed capacity is a fundamental problem in health care in Ireland and if the Minister can’t get to grips with even the basic problems, three years into his tenure, then we are going to see thousands more over 75’s languish in A&E’s across the country.”

“Stories of elderly patients being left lying in pain in emergency departments with no privacy are becoming all too frequent. The HSE’s own target of admitting or releasing all patients over the age of 75 within 24-hours is being breached literally thousands of times.”

“This is causing hardship to the patients, their families and to the nurses and doctors who are trying their best to cope with overflowing A&E’s. It’s totally unfair”


Frank O’Rourke has said Simon Harris’s tenure as Minister for Health has been marred by outpatient lists he simply cannot get to grips with.

Deputy O’Rourke was commenting as figures revealed that there has been a sharp increase in the number of patients languishing on outpatient waiting lists at Naas General Hospital since Minister Harris took up office.

                                     Frank O’Rourke

Deputy O’Rourke explained, “In May 2016 when Simon Harris became Minister for Health there were 839 people waiting greater than 12 months for an outpatient appointment at Naas General Hospital. In February 2019 this number stood at 2,989, representing a 256% increase. Nationally, there are now 541,899 people waiting for an appointment with a consultant. That’s almost equal to the population of Connacht at around 550,000. When the numbers waiting for an appointment is set to surpass the population of a province surely it’s time for the Minister to take action. This is clearly a crisis yet we see very little appetite from Minister Harris to tackle these astonishingly bad figures. Having had first-hand experience of the consultants and staff in Naas General Hospital – I know they are doing their very best under challenging circumstances. They deserve more help from the Minister”, concluded Deputy O’Rourke.