There has been another significant spike in the level of overcrowding at the region’s main hospital.
There are 74 patients on trolleys at University Hospital Limerick today, and no more than 20 at any other hospital in the country.
The INMO counted 64 patients on trolleys in the Emergency Department in Dooradoyle this morning, along with ten more people awaiting admission in other areas of the hospital.
The total number – 74 – is nearly four times than the next highest figure in Ireland, which is 20 at Cork University Hospital.
Hospital staff have been under immense pressure in recent days because of outbreaks of COVID-19 at University Hospital Limerick and at Ennis General.
On Friday, 188 staff were off work having either tested positive for COVID-19 or being identified as close contacts.
As a result, a large number of outpatient appointments and elective procedures were cancelled until this Friday.
Last night, there were 39 confirmed COVID cases in the UHL group, which remains the highest figure in the country.
That is back slightly on the recent high of 41 cases which had been recorded last week.
There are five confirmed COVID patients currently in intensive care at UHL.