Belfast Telegraph

Western Trust apologises to patients for postponing procedures

The Western Trust has apologised to patients who had their routine procedures postponed at Altnagelvin hospital.

Routine inpatient appointments at the hospital were temporarily halted by the trust due to a vomiting bug and nursing shortage.

The move affected non-urgent procedures, but urgent cases, day procedures and cancer surgery went ahead.

Despite the trust stating the situation was improving, more than ten beds remain closed due to ongoing staffing complications.

In a statement, the trust said:

"We will now proceed to book routine inpatient treatments.

"Like all other level one acute hospitals, Altnagelvin faces challenges on a daily basis. The number of postponed routine inpatient operations have also declined in recent weeks."

It was reported out of 271 scheduled inpatient operations due to take place week commencing August 2, 244 procedures went ahead as planned with 27 postponed.

"The Western Trust apologises for the inconvenience this may have caused to any patient who has had their routine procedure postponed. These will be re-appointed," it said.

All wards that were closed due to infection control issues have now reopened, it said, with all urgent cases and cancer surgery to continue.

The spokesperson for the trust stated: "The Western Trust is delighted to confirm that 118 student nurses have been offered full-time permanent employment at the Western Trust.

"All candidates have accepted the offer of employment pending successful completion of the training programme and are currently progressing through the recruitment stages. Their posts will commence in September 2017.

"We wish to pay tribute to our clinical and nursing staff working at the hospital and would also like to thank the public for their patience and understanding during this time."

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