Altnagelvin hospital: Trust sorry over postponement of procedures

Altnagelvin Hospital
Image caption The situation in Altnagelvin Hospital was being reviewed on a daily basis

The Western Trust has apologised to patients who had routine procedures postponed at Altnagelvin hospital.

The trust temporarily halted the booking of routine inpatient appointments at the hospital due to a nursing shortage and vomiting bug.

The move affected non-urgent procedures, but day procedures, urgent cases and cancer surgery went ahead.

More than ten beds remain closed due to ongoing staffing pressures, but the trust said the situation was improving.

"We will now proceed to book routine inpatient treatments," the trust said in a statement.

"Like all other level one acute hospitals, Altnagelvin faces challenges on a daily basis.

"The number of postponed routine inpatient operations have also declined in recent weeks."

It said that out of 271 scheduled inpatient operations due to take place in the week commencing 2 August, 244 went ahead as planned with 27 postponed.

"The Western Trust apologises for the inconvenience this may have caused to any patient who has had their routine procedure postponed. These will be re-appointed," it said.

All procedures at the hospital's Day Case Unit, all urgent cases and all cancer surgery continue to take place.

All wards that were closed due to infection control issues have now reopened, it said.

Image copyright Surgery

The spokesperson continued: "The Western Trust is delighted to confirm that 118 student nurses have been offered full-time permanent employment at the Western Trust.

"All candidates have accepted the offer of employment pending successful completion of the training programme and are currently progressing through the recruitment stages. Their posts will commence in September 2017.

"We wish to pay tribute to our clinical and nursing staff working at the hospital and would also like to thank the public for their patience and understanding during this time."

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