Additional nurses needed to staff planned new beds

The delivery of new beds in hospitals around Ireland is "entirely contingent on correct and safe staffing levels", Phil Ní Sheaghdha, general secretary, Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, has warned

Max Ryan

May 30, 2024

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  • Commenting on the government’s announcement of the planned delivery of 3,352 additional beds, the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation’s General Secretary Phil Ní Sheaghdha said:

    “The INMO welcomes the announcement regarding the delivery of beds but delivery is entirely contingent on correct and safe staffing levels. For every acute medical/surgical bed It requires a minimum of one additional nurse per bed and higher numbers for high dependency and complex needs and seven additional nurses per bed for intensive care unit beds. To realistically achieve this increase we must significantly increase undergraduate nursing and midwifery places and introduce bespoke retention measures to ensure nurses and midwives stay in the system.

    “With today’s announcement it has never been more obvious that the HSEs recruitment embargo must be immediately lifted for nursing and midwifery grades.

    “There is little point in announcing additional beds without a workforce plan in place. The HSE and Department of Health have yet to publish the funded workforce plan for 2024 and we are now at the end of the fifth month of this year. If this is the methodology that will continue for workforce planning it is hard to have confidence in the HSE’s ability to deliver these additional beds.”

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