In response to the Covid-19 pandemic the HSE had to take measures to defer most scheduled care activity in March, April, and May of 2020. This was to ensure patient safety and that all appropriate resources were made available for Covid-19 related activity and time-critical essential work. This decision was in line with the advice issued by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) in accordance with the advice of the World Health Organization.
Patient safety remained at the centre of all hospital activity and elective care scheduling throughout 2020. All hospitals followed HSE guidelines and protocols to ensure services were provided in a safe, clinically-aligned and prioritised way.
In relation to the particular query raised concerning the number of referrals by source of referral made for an outpatient consultation for each month of 2018, 2019, 2020 and in January 2021, as this is a service matter, I have asked the Health Service Executive to respond to the Deputy directly, as soon as possible.