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Government off its trolley.

Trolley madness at one of Dublin's leading hospitals is a grim reminder of the effects of health cut-backs.

Over 50 patients were left queuing on trolleys in a corridor of the accident and emergency department for over three days.

One teenage girl suffering from pneumonia spent six hours in a chair before she even got a place in the trolley queue.

Yet the most alarming news is that the bed shortage is not confined to the multi-million pound Beaumont Hospital on Dublin's north side.

Health boards all over the country are faced with the crisis every winter during the peak periods for colds and flu.

Tax payers fund the health service to the tune of pounds 2.5billion each year, yet they are being faced with an unacceptable three-day wait for a bed when they fall ill.

The chaotic scenes at Beaumont Hospital will send shivers down the spine on the morning that nurses are expected to vote for their first ever all- out strike.

The cold and flu epidemic is expected to be around all winter. And the chaos at Beaumount will be nothing compared to the scenes we could witness if the strike goes ahead.

The public has urged health minster Michael Noonan to get around the table with nursing unions.

The winter bed crisis is another example of how the public health service is being short changed by the Government to keep a tight rein on public spending.

When a 19-year-old suffering from a dangerous illness can't get a bed, things have gone too far.

The minister must act immediately to ensure the situation never arises again.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1997 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Leader
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jan 10, 1997
Previous Article:None but the brave.

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