State-run hospitals in the Algarve are receiving six Covid-19 patients from other Portuguese regions, the Algarve University Hospital Centre (CHUA) has confirmed.
The goal is to alleviate the pressure that some hospitals in Portugal are feeling due to rising numbers of people with Covid-19 requiring hospital assistance – a tendency which is not being felt in the Algarve.
“We have been able to reduce the number of people hospitalised,” Paulo Neves, Executive Board Member at CHUA told CNN Portugal, adding that hospitals in other parts of Portugal, however, are facing more pressure.
Neves added that the openness to welcome patients from other regions results from a “structured network” within the national health service (SNS).
The CHUA boss also said that the same kind of support had already been provided last year, and stressed that the fact that some hospitals are under pressure again is a sign that the pandemic “is not completely over”.
“There are still cases where people require hospital assistance,” he said.
While the Algarve might not have a large number of Covid-19 patients currently in need of hospital treatment, the truth is that the region’s public hospitals are nonetheless teeming with non-Covid patients (click here).
In order to deal with the influx of patients, the hospital board has resorted to hiring the services of private hospitals to find a hospital bed for everyone in need. “We have 60 non-Covid patients hospitalised in these circumstances,” Neves told Público newspaper last week.
The reason seems to be that the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus – said to spread more easily – is much less prevalent in the Algarve, accounting for just around 1% of cases, according to the latest data revealed by the National Health Institute Doutor Ricardo Jorge.