Life Or Death: Top doctors say life support now being ‘rationed’

Doctors forced to make ‘tough decisions’ and prioritise some critically ill patients; crisis stems from shortage of intensive care beds in hospitals

Susan Mitchell

Deputy Editor and Health Editor @susmitchellsbp
7th January, 2018

Doctors are being forced to “ration” critical care and life support due to the severe shortage of intensive care beds, with leading medics admitting they now must make “tough decisions” about which critically ill patients to prioritise.

Top doctors issued the stark warning as hospitals struggle to deal with growing demand. Overcrowding led to large numbers of patients on trolleys last week, peaking at 677 on Wednesday.

Dr Tom Ryan, president of...

Subscribe from just €1 for the first month!

Exclusive offers:

All Digital Access + eReader



Unlimited Access for 1 Month, €19.99 Monthly thereafter

Get basic

*New subscribers only

You can cancel any time.



€149 For the 1st Year

Unlimited Access for 1 Year

You can cancel any time.




90 Day Pass

You can cancel any time.

2 Yearly



Unlimited Access for 2 Years

You can cancel any time.

Team Pass

Get a Business Account for you and your team

Share this post

Related Stories

Analysis: Watt’s waiving of pay rise gets ministers off the hook – for now

Health Aiden Corkery 4 hours ago

Ireland’s medicinal cannabis scheme needs overhaul, advocate says

Health Eva Short 5 days ago

Some people with cystic fibrosis still awaiting Covid-19 vaccine, charity warns

Health Donal MacNamee 1 week ago

Top medic: ‘If the state can pay for Viagra, it can pay for extreme pregnancy sickness drugs’

Health Daniel Murray 2 weeks ago