Heart patients urged not to avoid Emergency Departments

By June Shannon Heart News   |   16th Jan 2023

Concerns that patients with a heart failure diagnosis, and others who need urgent care are avoiding Emergency Departments due to overcrowding.

The Irish Heart Foundation urges all heart patients to continue to access their usual clinic appointments and attend urgent care in Emergency Departments (EDs) if they have significant symptoms, such as breathlessness or chest pain.

The advice comes following concerns that cardiac patients are avoiding EDs due to the current pressure on the hospital system and appeals from the HSE for people to consider all options before attending the ED.

Commenting Dr Angie Brown Medical Director of the Irish Heart Foundation said, “we are concerned that some patients with heart failure who need urgent care are avoiding Emergency Departments or attending their clinic appointments due to the current pressures in acute hospitals.

It is vital that these patients continue to attend their clinic appointments and access emergency care when needed as any delay may lead to a worsening of their condition.”

It is estimated that some 90,000 people in Ireland are living with heart failure.

Dr Brown added that anyone with any symptoms of a heart attack, or stroke should immediately call 999 or 112.

Heart attacks and strokes are medical emergencies therefore anyone with severe symptoms of breathlessness, chest pain or signs of a stroke should phone an ambulance and go to the hospital immediately as it could save your life.

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