By NATASHA SMITH
FARO HOSPITAL directors have promised to find more space and reorganise the facilities and administration, following weeks of chaos in most departments particularly in accident and emergency.
In an effort to resolve the patient crisis that has hit the hospital, temporary facilities will be constructed near the accident and emergency area.
The hospital administration has promised to provide more than 800sqm of space in the new facility but more details about the structure will be revealed next week.
Staff at the hospital said that a technical team has been “mapping out a new organisation plan for the emergency department and other wards”.
A spokesperson told The Resident: “Part of the team is responsible for coordinating all the new actions and developing the alterations to the existing model. The other part will be responsible for designing and defining the strategic plan for the next two years”.
The announcement that the hospital will be reorganised has been welcomed by hospital staff after what they have called “a very difficult few weeks”.
Last week, staff were forced to convert a waiting room into a ward to care for patients but, with a lack of available beds, patients had to lay on stretchers. Meanwhile, the observation ward was inundated with patients lying on stretchers and the overcrowded corridors sparked fears from hospital staff that the risk of infections spreading was greater.
Staff told The Resident: “We were worried that some patients were at risk of contracting pneumonia and some people were waiting days before being seen”.
The hospital administration attributed the overcrowded hospital to “the necessity to analyse patients with greater depth” but some say it was due to poor organisation in the emergency ward. Others believe that the problems arose as a direct result of the 19 doctors who walked out on November 2 in protest of poor working conditions in accident and emergency.
It is hoped that the new plan will resolve some of the issues raised by the doctors but the hospital administration expects it to take time. However, immediate results are likely to be seen with the introduction of more beds and stretchers in the hospital, and particularly in accident and emergency.
A new structure and organisation plan is due to be unveiled on Monday (January 21) and the aim is to reduce waiting times and maintain a continuous flow of patients.
The hospital administration said that the plan will come into effect from May onwards and would be reviewed in 2010 to make any adjustments and improvements.
The new plan will continue to be a temporary solution until the new hospital at Parque das Cidades, in Faro, is opened.
The Algarve Central Hospital will take over from Faro hospital as the main facility and the latter will be converted into a unit for long-term care of the elderly. Health Minister, Correia de Campos, has said that the new facility should be finished by May 2012.
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