Health Officials urge the public to consider all care options this June Bank Holiday Weekend

Media Statement
Wednesday, 31 May 2023

With the June Bank Holiday weekend approaching, Health Officials in the North West are asking people to consider all care options before presenting at Emergency Departments.

Health Services are advising the public that there will be large numbers attending Emergency Departments this weekend and they will be prioritising those in need of urgent and emergency care.

Bank Holiday weekends can be a busy time for our hospitals and emergency services. This means that patients who attend EDs for routine and non-urgent treatment will experience very long waiting times over the coming weekend. Every effort is being made to discharge patients who are ready to go home so that beds will become available for patients who need to be admitted, at the earliest opportunity.

Health staff across hospital and community settings will continue to work together over the weekend to ensure all available beds across the hospital and community are in use.

Patient safety is at the forefront of everything we do and staff will continue to prioritise to ensure critical need is met. Health Services in the North West regret that any patient has experienced long wait times. As always, people who do require emergency care are encouraged to attend EDs where they will be prioritised.

You can help staff at this busy time by considering other options for non-emergency care such as Injury Units, Out of Hours GP and pharmacies before attending an ED.

Out of Hours GP services, NoWDOC and Caredoc, will be open from 6pm Friday 1st June until 8am Tuesday 6th June.

NoWDOC, Donegal and South Leitrim can be contacted on 0818 400 911 and Caredoc, which covers Sligo, North Leitrim and West Cavan on 0818 365 399. Additional GPs and nurses will be available in out of hours GP Services, NowDoc and Caredoc and the HSE ask that people use this service for non-urgent care.

Dermot Monaghan, Chief Officer HSE Community Healthcare Cavan, Donegal, Leitrim, Monaghan, Sligo added: “We would ask people to consider all options of care before presenting at Emergency Departments this June Bank Holiday Weekend. There will be Out of Hours GP services available in Sligo/ North Leitrim/ West Cavan through Caredoc and through NoWDOC in Donegal and south Letirim. We would also ask people to also consider pharmacies before attending at ED’s.”

Tony Canavan, CEO of the Saolta Group said: Tony Canavan, CEO of the Saolta Group said: “As we approach the Bank Holiday weekend we want to assure all members of the public that we will be there for them for emergency care. To best protect those who need urgent care we are appealing to our communities to consider all care options before attending at ED. Using GP and pharmacy services in the first instance will help protect our emergency departments for those who need it most.”

Information is available on the HSE website on when you should go to the ED or you can get advice on a number of illnesses that can be treated at home.

The HSE’s mychild website also has lots of information regarding childhood illness and viruses.

Last updated on: 31 / 05 / 2023