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anti-vax chaos Donegal hospital step up security after gardai called out twice to deal with anti-vaxxers

A video has also emerged showing doctors pleading with a Covid patient not to leave

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Letterkenny University Hospital

Letterkenny University Hospital

Letterkenny University Hospital

Security at a Co Donegal hospital has been heightened after Gardai confirmed they were TWICE called to the facility in recent days following incidents involving anti-vaccine protesters.

It follows an incident when a Covid-19 patient was taken from Letterkenny University Hospital on Tuesday last against medical advice from doctors.

The patient, who is in his 60s, was rushed back into the hospital on Thursday with severe breathing difficulties.

The man is now understood to have been placed in an induced coma and is described as being in "a serious condition."

Gardai have confirmed they were called to two incidents following reports of disturbances at the medical facility.

There are also concerns that staff at the hospital are being harassed and abused by protestors in the grounds of the hospital including the car parks.

Gardai were first called on Tuesday when a patient with obvious breathing difficulties was taken from the hospital despite pleas from doctors at the scene.

The removal of the man was videod by people acting on behalf of the patient and claiming to act under Common Law.

The incident was later posted on social media by the same people who removed him.

In the video the man is seen being taken from the hospital amidst claims that he was being forced into the Intensive Care Unit by hospital staff.

Doctors plead with the man, who was accompanied by his wife, to remain in the hospital reassuring him he is in a better place and plead with him to allow them to help him.

However, those taking him from the hospital say they are “rescuing” him and that it is better that he die at home than in the hospital.

The man, understood to be an Italian national, is heard saying "We are saving lives and we are going to save more.

"We came to Letterkenny to rescue my friend because they were trying to kill him.

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"We are walking home from the hospital and nobody is going to stop us. We are going home. We are saving the lives of the people"

The man claims he is operating under common or natural law.

The man claims they are going to get more people out of hospital claiming "they are killing people without consent."

The patient, who was accompanied by his wife, is heard explaining to doctors how he felt better on Wednesday morning but was told he must enter the Intensive Care Unit.

However, hospital staff are heard explaining to him how the Covid virus strikes in peaks and troughs.

An unidentified doctor pleads with the patient to stay in the care of the hospital.

The man, understood to be a Consultant at the hospital, tells the patient that what is happening is wrong.

"It is endangering your life by doing that. You have the right to decide what you want to do.

"I don't think what he is saying is right at all. You are barely able to breath there now. We want you to stay to help you," says the Consultant."

However, the man trying to remove the patient from the hospital interrupts and says "If you stay here they are going to f******** kill you".

The consultant again tries to plead with the man saying, "I want to help you and I want you to stay. I think he is saying something very dangerous. What he is saying is very wrong and very dangerous and I think he is endangering your life.

"It's a very difficult decision you have. I'm not lying to you that you could die but your best chance is in the hospital and getting oxygen and getting the support we are giving to you."

The man accompanying the patient then claims the hospital staff are lying to him and says this is his last chance to get home.

The consultant then pleads with the man wife to stay in the hospital.

The patient said he was told that he was improving but had to go to ICU and says "There is mixed messages all across..."

They then leave the hospital.

On Thursday morning the patient was rushed back into hospital and has been placed in the Intensive Care Unit.

A well-placed source said the man has been put into an induced coma, is on a ventilator and his condition is “very serious.”

Bizarrely, some anti-vaccination protestors entered the hospital with the man and again began videoing the scene of his admission.

A spokesperson for the Garda Press Office confirmed they had been called to the hospital twice in recent days because of the situation.

“An Garda Síochána responded to a report of a disturbance at Letterkenny University Hospital on September 14, 2021. However, on arrival those involved were no longer present.

“Enquiries are ongoing. An Garda Síochána has no role in the enforcement of Public Health Guidelines

“An Garda Síochána were called to Letterkenny University Hospital shortly after 3pm on 16th September 2021 in response to a disturbance involving a male visitor to the hospital. However, on arrival, the individual had left of his own accord.

“Enquiries are ongoing. An Garda Síochána has no role in the enforcement of Public Health Guidelines.”

There were no reports of any arrests.

However, staff at the hospital have complained that they are being harassed and shouted at by anti-vaxxers entering and leaving the hospital.

It is understood some staff contacted the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) after the issue.

The Saolta Hospital Group, which oversees the running of Letterkenny University Hospital and other hospitals throughout the country, declined to comment on claims that staff are being harassed.

However, a Saolta spokesperson said earlier this week that they are aware of two incidents where groups have spread dis-information at its hospital sites.

The spokesperson said: "Saolta has grave concerns about the impact of this type of activity on both patients and staff.

"Patient safety and care is of paramount importance to the group. Hospitals across the region are under extreme pressure as a result of record levels of attendances of both Covid and non-Covid patients.

"The deliberate spreading of dis-information and at times defamatory comments against named staff members along with the posting of these videos on social media platforms is adding significantly to the burden already facing healthcare professionals."

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