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‘I wouldn’t go to hospital if I was dying’

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One Ennis woman whose daughter spent six days in hospital last week has declared she would avoid going to University Hospital Limerick even if she was dying.

Brenda Conlon’s 17 year old daughter, Eileen was rushed to hospital last Sunday week having suffered a serious asthma attack. Having been treated at University Hospital Limerick, Eileen was transferred to Ennis General Hospital until her discharge on Saturday.

Though praiseworthy of the care afforded to her daughter, Brenda was appalled with what she saw in Limerick and noticed a big contrast between that and Ennis General Hospital. “It is an absolute disgrace, I do not know what is wrong with our Irish Government. I do not know what is wrong. I said to myself ‘thank God I’m not the one in there and thank God my daughter is out of there’”.

“I’m used to going in and out of hospitals but I can tell you if I was dying in the morning I wouldn’t go there. They are run off their feet, they don’t have enough doctors, they don’t have enough doctors, not enough wards to look after that many people. I wouldn’t go there if you paid me €200 or €300, I would not go”.

Having initially contacted The Clare Echo to share her concerns, Brenda was then asked where she would go if in need of serious medical attention. “I would actually go to Galway, thank God I haven’t been sick for a while but if I was really sick I would go to Galway”.

When speaking to The Clare Echo last week, management of UL Hospitals Group confirmed they were opposed to reopening the Accident and Emergency Unit at Ennis General Hospital and that overcrowding at University Hospital Limerick “will take a number of years” to solve. €19.5m in funding has been allocated to UHL for the construction of 156 beds.

Responding to this, Brenda stated, “What’s going to happen then, more people are going to be dying, there’s going to be more people on trolleys in Limerick, more strikes. We could all be dead by the time they deal with it. The way it is at the minute in Limerick people are dying. It’s not fair but if it was one of their families or say our Taoiseach he’s a GP he should know, if it was one of his family in the morning it would be VIP treatment the whole way”.

Newmarket-on-Fergus native, Páraic McMahon is a freelance journalist and broadcaster currently working for numerous national and local publications including The Clare Echo, The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent, The Irish Times, RTÉ, TheJournal.ie, The42.ie. A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to - paraic@clareecho.ie

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