Over 350 vacant consultant posts in local hospital groups

There are 354 vacant or unfilled consultants posts in hospital groups serving the Shannonside Northern Sound region.

That’s according to figures from the Health Service Executive’s National Doctors Training and Planning Unit, published in today’s Irish Times.

Nationally, the figures show that more than a fifth of all  permanent consultant posts are either vacant or only filled on a temporary basis by locum or agency personnel.

Saolta University Health Care Group which includes Galway University Hospital, Roscommon and Sligo hospitals has the highest number of permanently unfilled or vacant consultants posts with 104.

Ireland East Hospital Group which includes the Midlands Regional Hospital in Mullingar and Our Lady’s Hospital Navan has 88 while Dublin Midlands Hospital Group which includes the Midlands Regional Hospital in Tullamore reports 85 posts.

And there are 77 vacant or permanently unfilled consultant posts in the RCSI Hospitals Group which includes Cavan and Monaghan Hospitals as well as Our Lady of Lourde’s Hospital in Drogheda.

The figures also show that the manpower issue is having a significant impact on the numbers of people waiting for an outpatient appointment with a consultant.

612,000 people are waiting nationwide, with 437 thousand of those (437,105), over 71 per cent, waiting for an appointment in hospital groups serving patients in the Shannonside Northern Sound region.