An appeal for 300 to 400 more nurses to be recruited or transferred to the Algarve health services was launched by the regional branch of the Portuguese Nurses Union (SEP), and directed towards the Portuguese Health Minister last week.
Nuno Manuja, a representative of SEP, took advantage of the fact that the minister Paulo Macedo was visiting the Algarve and handed him a document stressing the need for more nurses in the region’s hospitals and basic health care units.
Manuja revealed that the data was gathered from recent studies regarding the subject.
The minister received the document and told the union representative that he would study how to deploy more nurses to the region. He added that he would be available for further talks after his visit to the Faro Hospital.
The spokesperson for SEP said that the creation of the regional hospital administrative body, Centro Hospitalar do Algarve, is affecting nurses because some are working 35 hours per week in Faro and others are working 40 hours in Portimão.
“The working hours are different, but the pay is different as well,” he said, adding that in both cases they are earning wages “below the set values for public health nurses”.