UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL LIMERICK need to take immediate action following the inquest into the death of Shannon man Martin Abbott, a Sinn Féin Senator has said.

On Wednesday last, a verdict of death by medical misadventure was recorded in the inquest into the death of sixty five year old Martin.

Senator Paul Gavan (SF) has said the events described by the family from Clare are “harrowing”.

He stated, “I want to extend my deepest sympathy to the family of Martin Abbott on the devastating loss of a much-loved husband and father. Mr Abbott and his family deserved to have known that he would be safe in University Hospital Limerick and would receive timely, appropriate care. The events described at the inquest are nothing short of harrowing. This is every family’s worst nightmare and can never be allowed to happen again”.

Martin may have been dead for over an hour before staff found him after he fell off a trolley at the emergency department in UHL, the inquest heard.

According to Sinn Féin’s candidate in the upcoming European elections, “This gentleman it appears had fallen from a hospital trolley in a busy hospital ward. This tragedy occurred in 2019 and unfortunately the trolley numbers have got considerably worse since then. In 2023 there was an incredible 21,409 patients treated on trolleys and in hospital corridors. In March 2024 to date 1,834 people have been treated in this manner. These are people who have been deemed in need of a bed and yet no bed was available to them”.

“It has been clear for many, many years now that the crisis at University Hospital Limerick is severe and is worsening. There are no more excuses for government’s inaction. I and my colleague, Maurice Quinlivan, have consistently called for the Minister for Health and this government to take urgent action to protect patients and protect staff. The steps they have taken are paltry and much, much more must be done. The scheduled 96-bed unit will only deliver 48 new beds, with the other 48 replacing beds in the Nightingale ward. This new ward will only become operational in mid-2025. While the creation of additional bed spaces is welcome, they must be delivered much more quickly,” he added.

There is no excuse for allowing repeat nightmares to occur, Senator Gavan insisted. “The people of Limerick, Clare and Tipperary deserve better. They can’t wait any longer. Government must finally get to grips with this appalling crisis and ensure no more patients and families are subjected to a nightmare like this”.

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Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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