Thousands of procedures and operations have been cancelled in the past fortnight as the INMO and its almost 40,000 members conducted 24-hour strike actions across the country, in a bid to highlight pay disparity and poor working conditions in the sector.
Three consecutive days of strike action are due to begin tomorrow morning after weekend talks failed to break the deadlock.
Conor Deasy, a Consultant in Emergency Medicine at the Cork University Hospital (CUH), said the strikes have had a major impact on the hospital.
“It is having a major impact across the hospital,” he said. “We end up having to manage patients that should be on the wards, in the corridors of the Emergency Department.
“During the strike days, community hospitals don’t take discharges from CUH so those patients end up staying on the wards for longer,” added Dr Deasy.
“That means we can’t get a patient from the ED up into that ward because it’s booked out basically.
“The same thing happens then with theatres which don’t work on strike days.”