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Beaumont Hospital asks patients to 'avoid A&E if possible'

Beaumont Hospital Image copyright RTÉ
Image caption Beaumont Hospital said it "regrets the extremely difficult conditions" faced by patients and staff at its emergency department

A Dublin hospital has asked patients not to come to its emergency department if possible, in order to reduce the pressure on staff and patients in A&E.

Beaumont Hospital said conditions in the unit were "extremely difficult".

In a statement on Saturday, it appealed to patients who were considering coming to A&E to "avoid or delay their visit" and to contact their GP instead.

Irish broadcaster RTÉ said ambulances bound for Beaumont were being diverted to other hospitals where possible.

However, it reported that "acute emergency situations" were still being dealt with at Beaumont.

'Deteriorated'

The hospital's statement said: "In recent days, Beaumont has introduced further escalation procedures with the aim of relieving the pressures on the emergency department.

"Notwithstanding these, conditions for patients and staff have deteriorated.

"Beaumont is appealing for support from the wider community to reduce the pressure on the emergency department," it added.

In addition to the public appeal, the hospital authorities said they have asked GPs "not to send patients to Beaumont emergency department unless absolutely necessary".

Management have also cancelled "non-urgent admissions" and surgery in order to free up additional beds.

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