A consultant at University Hospital Kerry says almost 500 of its patients have been on the orthopaedic waiting list for more than 18 months.
Eimear Conroy is consultant orthopaedic surgeon at UHK and a member of the Irish Hospital Consultants’ Association.
The IHCA says the HSE needs to almost double the number of consultant posts in this field to reach the recommendations of a national task force report - the Hanly report - which was published 19 years ago.
Ms Conroy says the longer people await treatment, the longer the pain they’re in, and this may affect their rehabilitation.
She says orthopaedic patients are being dealt with under the National Treatment Purchase Fund but they still face delays.
The Irish Hospital Consultants’ Association has launched its Care Can’t Wait campaign to highlight the plight of orthopaedic patients.
Eimear Conroy says it’s not just a case of employing more consultants.
The consultant orthopaedic surgeon at UHK says a major reorganisation of hospitals is needed.