Hi, my name is Michael Daly, I am from Limerick city, and I was asked by Dave Tierney of MentalDIY.com to do a piece on something I’m passionate about. I am passionate about the need to protest against the University Hospital Limerick (UHL). The need to protest for change and better healthcare for patients within this hospital.
There are many reasons for this; one being my Dad died needlessly as an inpatient in UHL April 2010. While we were absorbing the reality that our Dad died needlessly, we were further faced with knowing that the medical team gave a cause of death that our family did not believe: death by natural causes. Having fought for years against a system that’s designed to deny any wrongdoing, I undertook to investigate my Dad's death myself, and it resulted in a second inquest in 2023. That inquest returned a verdict of medical misadventure. To anyone not familiar with our story, Google Michael Daly Limerick.
Over the years I see the overcrowded A&E department escalate and the numbers waiting kept rising, and nothing being done by the people in power, ever since the closing of Nenagh, Ennis and St. John’s A&Es in 2009 numbers rose year after year. This one A&E department caters for over 400,000 people in Limerick and the mid west, and it has failed.
December 2022 , the inevitable happened and the sad and tragic death of a child of 16, a child of 16 died it was alleged because of being kept waiting to be seen, and by the time she was seen apparently it was too late for her. Another needless death just like my Dad’s needless death, and this is 12 years on from my Dad’s death.
When I heard the details of this young girls death, I couldn’t believe it, a child presents at A&E for help and is kept waiting days, and whilst waiting she goes beyond the point of help. In Ireland in 2023, this is unbelievable and unacceptable. I waited a few days thinking our local politicians would be up in arms about this, but nothing, silence from them all on social media. I decided to organise a protest, and it lead to over 11k people coming to the streets demanding the reopening of the 3 A&Es to immediately alleviate the waiting times for people to be seen.
The people in power ignored us, ignored 11k people. It lead to no change. And today nearly 12 months on from that protest, the overcrowded A&E department is worse than before, a waiting time for one lady was 7 days in A&E. They learned nothing from the death of that young child, nor the death of another teenager a year or two before. The only way we can try and make those in power listen is by protests. In the name of all who has died needlessly we need to keep the spotlight on the blatant failure of UHL A&E.
We must protest until they either reopen the A&Es in Nenagh, Ennis and St. John’s, or they bring in a system that works. We need to see the overcrowded department that leads to needless deaths return to being able to manage patients within a reasonable waiting time. If not, I fear in the future we will continue to see needless deaths due to non acceptable waiting times.
If we don’t do this for ourselves, who will, which is why I am going to organise another protest within a month or two. So to anyone reading this, please go to my page on Facebook “protest of UHL hospital limerick”, like and share the page, encourage all your family and friends and come along to the protest when it occurs. It could be your family member next unless we bring change to that hospital.
We welcome feedback
Mental DIY team: You can contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org If anyone wants to share their opinions with their politicians, you can find their contact details here: https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/members/ Stephen Donnelly of Fiana Fáil, based in Co. Wicklow, is our current Minister of Health: https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/members/member/Stephen-Donnelly.D.2011-03-09/