A hospital board has apologised to a patient who was bitten by cockroaches as he lay on a makeshift bed in Caldas de Rainha casualty department.
Vítor Neves had been admitted into the hospital with a back injury sustained as he performed maintenance work at a local wind park.
“I was asleep when I felt something bite my head,” the 33-year-old told Correio da Manhã.
“I had no idea what it was until I turned round, and got another bite on my back.”
He then made out no less than five cockroaches on his hospital “maca” (stretcher bed), and managed to kill one with his mobile phone.
Understandably aghast, Neves complained to the nurses who told him that “it wasn’t the first time cockroaches had been seen in casualty”.
As Neves told CM, he decided that this was a good moment to leave the hospital – which he promptly did, wasting no time on filing any kind of complaint.
It was only days later, when he was looking at the images of the bugs captured on his mobile phone, that he decided it really wasn’t a hospital experience to keep to himself.
Neves filed an online complaint with the health service’s regulatory authority, which is now “appreciating the case”.
Meantime, the CHO (Centro Hospitalar do Oeste) has apologised, promising “increased vigilance” over the detection of these kinds of “situations”.
The casualty department in question is sprayed against infestations every month, it added, by a contracted cleaning company.
As CM explains, cockroaches are “vehicles of transmission of diseases to human beings” and have apparently existed for “more than 300 million years”.