17 patients are on trolleys in Kerry General Hospital’s Emergency Department today. That’s according to the Irish Nurses’ and Midwives’ Organisation which carries out daily checks in departments nationwide. The number of patients on trolleys in Kerry General has been steadily increasing this week from eight on Monday, ten on Tuesday, twelve yesterday jumping to 17 today. The HSE says the department has experienced a surge in activity in recent days. Of today’s 17 patients, six were discharged or being discharged this afternoon, five were allocated to wards and wards are being identified for the remainder. The HSE wants to reassure the public that they are addressing this issue as a priority and every effort is being made to minimise delays. An Escalation Protocol has been triggered and this has helped in addressing the accumulation in ED. Kerry General wants to thank patients for their forbearance and wants to acknowledge and thank staff for their extraordinary efforts in recent days.