Son Llatzer. | S. AMENGUAL

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The stories of the week here divide between the needs and happiness of tourists and the medical needs of some residents. We are all working extremely hard for the visitors and want them to have the best time. Some residents are under the focus of our local hospital Son Llatzer, as they strive to get up to date with appointments, tests and revisions cancelled by Covid pressures. Every other person you talk to is on their way for a blood test, or setting of for the marathon journey, to actually see the doctor.

The hospital situation for the Soller Valley continues to be debated as the one our area is attached to is Son Llatzer. Sometimes when pressure is on the accident and emergency departments patients from Soller are taken to Son Espases as well. The bus service from Soller includes a few buses each day which stop at Son Espases. For a regular appointment this service is neither use nor ornament – this is not our designated hospital.

I was one who made the car journey this week for an 8.30am blood test. I left Soller around 7.20am to take into account the Palma bound traffic. Arrived in good time and sat and waited in the packed waiting area. A Soller neighbour arrived shortly after me and we chatted about our morning so far. She had walked 15 minutes to get to the bus stop in Soller and caught the Palma bound bus. At Plaza Espanya she changed on to the bus for Son Llatzer – journey time was nearly two hours. A blood test would have been available in Soller for her but she needed to be at the hospital for hours of further tests. I couldn’t even offer her a lift home…

Ambulances in Soller

How can this be right?

The pick-up services by ambulance are for the rehabilitation appointments and for those with disabilities. The rest of us either have to use public transport or make other arrangements. Then the indignity of having a local bus stopping at the hospital which most Sollerics do not use. This is becoming an issue now as the area is waking up again to what it means to go to the hospital for anything.

Don’t get me wrong we are very glad of the work the medical services are doing to get up to date but a bit of joined up thinking would be appreciated. This is an old subject which gets debated regularly. Many say that Son Espases is nearer in all respects to Soller and they can’t understand the Son Llatzer allocation. The creation of a new bus service to connect to both hospitals is a long way down the drawing board.

Meanwhile back in the Soller Valley world we have music, fiestas, sunshine and wonderful beaches. Locals are now preparing themselves for schools breaking up and having the children to entertain for the next 11 weeks. They will enjoy the normality of the summer 2022. The heat and sunshine is just waiting for them all.