THE number of women waiting for gynaecology appointments in Cork University Maternity Hospital has almost doubled in a year.
According to latest figures released to Sinn Féin TD Sorca Clarke by the HSE in response to a parliamentary question, there were 2,356 people waiting for gynaecology appointments at CUMH at the end of January, up from 1,234 around the same time last year.
Nationally, there are currently 30,805 people on waiting lists for gynaecology appointments.
Sinn Féin TD for Cork North Central Thomas Gould has called on the Government to act urgently to address the issue.
“Last year, Sinn Féin was assured by the health minister that these figures were so high due to the immediate response to the pandemic,” said Mr Gould.
“I am deeply alarmed that, a year later, these figures have not decreased but have in fact increased. It is clear that there is a very concerning ongoing crisis in our gynaecology waiting lists which has been continuing for far too long.
“Behind every number is a woman anxiously waiting for healthcare that she needs.
“Delayed appointments lead to delayed care, which can in turn lead to delayed diagnoses and delayed treatment. This is unacceptable. Women in Cork deserve better.”
Mr Gould called on the minister for health to publish a plan to reduce gynaecology waiting lists, including how he will address the issues affecting CUMH.
Ms Clarke added: “A gynae appointment isn’t sought on a whim. It is because of need for medical care, often for conditions that are debilitating, such as abnormal bleeding, fibroids, endometriosis, ovarian cysts, and prolapse.
“Behind these numbers there are 30,805 women stressed and anxious waiting for healthcare.
“Delayed appointments lead to delayed care, which can in turn lead to delayed diagnoses and delayed treatment.”