A Message from Tallaght University Hospital

JANUARY 13th 2023: Tallaght University Hospital is asking for the public’s help in order to protect services for the most seriously ill. The Hospital is asking people to consider all care options before attending Emergency Departments (ED) as we need to protect our EDs for those patients who need urgent and emergency care.

As always Emergency Departments will continue to see and treat patients who require urgent and emergency treatment first. We would like to advise Patients who attend EDs for routine and non-urgent treatment that they will experience long waiting times.

Like other hospitals around the country there has been an increase in the numbers of patients presenting at the Emergency Department for care and treatment, including a sharp increase in the number of patients who are seen and treated in the ED and then discharged without requiring admission to hospital.

As always if you or someone else is seriously ill or needs urgent emergency care do not delay going to ED or dialling 999/112 for help.

Health Services are available to you if you are feeling unwell or are injured. These include;

Community Pharmacies:
You can visit your local pharmacy if you feel unwell. Pharmacists are qualified healthcare professionals. They can give you medicines you can buy without a prescription, medicines you have a prescription for, advice on minor illnesses, and can tell you if you need to see a GP.

GPs and GP Out-of-Hours Services:
GPs are running additional clinics during this time of high pressure. If you urgently need to see a GP outside their clinic hours, you can contact your local GP out-of-hours service. Urgent out-of-hours GP care is available when your own surgery closes in the evening. The service is not a walk-in service. It is by appointment only for those who are seriously unwell. Patients should also remember that GP surgeries will be open as normal on non-bank holiday days. Patients should check the opening times with their own GP.

The TLC DOC GP Out of Hours Service is an urgent out of hours family doctor service operating in the Dublin South West Area. TLC Doc is located Unit H2 Carbury Building, Tallaght Cross West, Tallaght, Dublin 24. Eircode D24 FKT7. Contact with the service can only be made by dialling the 1890 20 22 24 number. The service is available to patients of GP’s participating in the TLC DOC Out of Hours Service. If, on contacting the service, you need to be seen by a doctor, you will be given an appointment time.

KDOC provides urgent out-of-hours GP care for patients of participating practices in counties Kildare and West Wicklow. Patients can contact the service by calling KDOC 045 848 701

DUBDOC provides out-of-hours urgent GP Services in Dublin 2, 8, 10, 12, 20, parts of D6 and West Co. Dublin. Patients can contact the service by calling 01 454 5607.

The service should only be used for urgent cases that cannot wait for the next routine surgery appointment.

Minor Injury Units:
Injury units treat injuries that are not life-threatening. For example, broken bones, dislocations and burns. You do not need an appointment. There are 11 HSE Injury Unit Locations, you can find one close to you on the HSE website: www.hse.ie/winter

Other measures include:

Vaccination: It’s not too late for people to get their flu vaccine, or their COVID-19 booster, if they are due. Even though vaccines take two weeks to work, vaccination is an effective, safe way to protect you and people around you from flu or COVID-19.

Stay at home if you are sick:  If you have symptoms of flu or Covid, please stay at home.  As schools and childcare facilities reopen this week we ask parents to continue to be mindful of others when their children are sick and to keep them home from school and childcare if they are displaying new symptoms of illness.

Antivirals: Doctors may prescribe anti-viral medication for people who are at the highest risk of serious illness from COVID 19 or flu.  Anti-virals work by reducing the ability of the virus to multiply in the body, therefore helping to fight the infection and may prevent serious illness. 

It is particularly important that those who are at highest risk of serious illness from COVID 19 or flu talk to their doctor if they have symptoms.

If a person at higher risk has symptoms of COVID 19 and had a positive PCR or antigen test in the previous 5 days, their doctor may prescribe an antiviral such as Paxlovid.

Those who are at higher risk of serious illness or death from COVID 19 include those who are:

  • immunocompromised and have a weak immune system;  
  • have not been fully vaccinated and are aged 65 or over;  
  • have not been fully vaccinated and have additional risk factors.  

Patients may also be considered for anti-viral treatment for COVID 19 if they are:    

  • vaccinated and aged 75 or over;   
  • vaccinated and aged 65 or over with additional risk factors.  

To see what is recommended for you, go to hse.ie or talk to your pharmacist or GP.