Sinn Fein senator Padraig MacLochlainn has obtained figures which show that more than 7,000 outpatient appointments were cancelled last year in Letterkenny.
The figure for Letterkenny University Hospital lists 7,172 outpatient cancellations for all of 2016, according to information provided in parliamentary response to senator MacLochlainn.
The newly released figure of 7,172 is an increase from 5,340 cancellations in 2013.
Senator MacLochlainn has today, Thursday, described the figures as "absolutely appalling".
He said: "I have warned that the consequences of the Government's approach to the crisis in our hospitals and the near permanent use of the full capacity protocol at Letterkenny University Hospital would result in more and more cruel cancellations for people on hospital waiting lists.
"Unfortunately, the figures that I have received in response to a parliamentary question reveal that there were 7,172 outpatient cancellations at Letterkenny University Hospital in 2016.
"This has increased from 5,340 cancellations in 2013. This is absolutely appalling.
"The Irish Nurses' and Midwives' Organisation (INMO), other trade unions, and senior healthcare professionals had all warned that the use of the Full Capacity Protocol in response to emergency ward overcrowding was 'robbing Peter to pay Paul' because people on waiting lists or outpatients would face increased cancellations."
Senator MacLochlainn (pictured) added: "But it's worse than that. You are not even 'paying Paul' if you look at the numbers of Donegal people on trolleys at Letterkenny University Hospital last year.
"The shortcuts and the gimmicks are not working.
"There is a crisis across the entire health system from the home care packages through to our community hospitals and right through to our major hospitals like Letterkenny University Hospital.
"The Minister for Health [Simon Harris] and the Government need to reverse the years of cutbacks to our health service.
"They need to outline a multi-year plan for the necessary investment in beds and staff across our broken system."
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