Algarve hospital is “national priority” says health minister

Portuguese Health Minister Paulo Macedo has said that the building of the proposed Hospital Central do Algarve is a “national priority” but the delay in starting work is due to the Government’s financial problems.

“This hospital is a priority but we must have funding available to start it,” said Paulo Macedo.

He said that the importance of building the new hospital is very high and that the project is at the top of the list of investments for the country, but the financial plan to turn the project into reality is still missing.

“We need to find the funds to implement the project. The funding must be outlined in the State Budget for 2012,” he said.

Paulo Macedo added that it is very complicated to make an investment of this scale when, at the same time, there is an austere programme of budgetary cuts in the healthcare system.

The project of Hospital Central do Algarve was due to have started in 2007.At the end of last year, the former government led by José Sócrates had stated that the project was planned to be finished in 2013, while the health minister at the time, Ana Jorge, had said that the work on the region’s new Hospital Central do Algarve would start in 2011. 

The hospital is planned to be built between Faro and Loulé, near the Algarve Stadium, and is expected to have 549 beds.

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