The IHCA response came following new figures from the INMO that showed a record 656 patients were today on trolleys or on wards in Irish hospitals waiting for admission to a bed.
Dr Ryan, said that today’s record number of patients on trolleys requiring hospital care was “entirely predictable and unacceptable”.
He added that the crisis is “due to the fact that acute hospital in-patient bed numbers were cut by 1,400 in the past decade when they should, at a minimum, have been increased in tandem with the country’s growing and ageing population trends”.
The Association President said that his organisation has been “highlighting for years the critical need to expand our acute hospital capacity” to ensure that patients are provided with “safe, high quality care without delays”.
The IHCA President said he welcomed Minister Harris’s statement, in the past week, on the need for thousands more acute hospital beds. However, Dr Ryan added that it is essential that the commissioning of the additional beds is advanced urgently as “our hospitals are at breaking point”.