Stay safe at the weekend and help protect the hospitals this October bank holiday

Over the long weekend and midterm break, the HSE is encouraging the public to consider all care options before attending Emergency Departments in order to protect them for patients who need urgent and emergency care.

Emergency Departments (EDs) continue to be extremely busy with high numbers of patients attending who require admission. This means that patients who attend EDs for routine and non-urgent treatment will experience very long waiting times.

It is really important that people who do require emergency care are encouraged to attend EDs where they will be prioritised. Please dial 999 or 112 for emergency care if there is a concern for serious illness or injury.

The HSE regrets that patients will face significant delays and asks everyone to help our staff at this time by considering other options for non-emergency care such as Injury Units, Out of Hours GP and pharmacies before attending an ED.

Injury units treat injuries that are not life-threatening, such as broken bones, dislocations, sprains, wounds, scalds and minor burns. Details of Injury Unit locations and what they can and cannot treat are on

Information on how to manage common illness and advice on when to get emergency help is available from

The HSE’s mychild website also has lots of information regarding winter childhood illness and viruses such as bronchiolitis and RSV (Youtube video).

Due to a number of COVID-19 outbreaks in hospitals around the county, some access to visitors may be restricted and people are advised to check in advance if planning to visit a family member in hospital over the weekend.

Last updated on: 28 / 10 / 2022