Prefabs now the latest suggestion to relieve overcrowding in hospitals

The Minister for Health has defended moves to provide prefabs at hospitals in an effort to relieve overcrowding.

Simon Harris says it’s a short-term solution by adding additional capacity.

However, there are concerns about the provision of additional staff for the prefabs.

The HSE is hoping to hire 1,200 extra nurses but it is currently in dispute with the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, which oculd result in a work-to-rule from early next month.

Although the prefabs are to be temporary, there’s also the fear that they could remain on site for many years, like what happened in the past when prefabs were located on the grounds of schools to provide additional accommodation.

Meanwhile, there are 25 patients on hospital trolleys in the North West today. 17 of these are in Letterkenny University Hospital and 8 in Sligo University Hospital.

14 of the patients in Letterkenny are on wards while all eight patients in Sligo are in emergency and overflow areas.