Hospitals advising patients of cancellations due to nurse strike

Nurse Strike
Hospitals have begun advising thousands of patients that elective admissions and planned out-patient appointments for January 30th are to be cancelled due to strike action.

Nurses and midwives are to hold the first in a series of strikes on Wednesday of next week.

The Mater Hospital in Dublin said it would be providing emergency services only on January 30th, and on any subsequent days of industrial action. “ All other services will be postponed, including but not limited to elective surgery, out-patient clinics, minor injuries unit service and day services.”

The Ireland East Hospital Group said it had issued a directive to its hospitals to begin informing patients of cancellations. The group includes the Mater Hospital, St Vincent’s University Hospital, Midland Regional Hospital Mullingar, St Luke’s General Hospital, Kilkenny, Wexford General Hospital, the National Maternity Hospital and the Eye and Ear Hospital.

The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) said on Tuesday the industrial action would be “the most serious strike our country’s health service has seen”.

“While some services will run, many will be in total shutdown,” it said. Patients should contact the HSE “to find out about their specific needs”.

“The HSE has confirmed that they will notify patients. The HSE has already notified GPs and other community services.”

The INMO said it had notified the HSE that its members would be providing only life-saving and emergency care during the strike. “They have asked us for some exceptions, many of which have we have agreed to. But there should be no doubt. This is a real strike.”

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