By Humphrey Carter

BRITISH resident Eva Maria Burns, who has lived on the island for the past 12 years, has recently been discharged from the new Son Espases Ib-Salut hospital in Palma and yesterday said that she was “shocked” by the poor state of the building which is being hailed as “one of the best hospitals in Europe”.

Burns was admitted to the hospital last Wednesday to have her ankle rebuilt. She was discharged on Sunday and yesterday gave the impression she was glad to be home. “The building may look great and modern, all glass and steel from the outside, but from the inside it's dirty and falling to pieces. It's clearly been rushed and it's falling apart before even being finished,” she said yesterday after supplying a collection of photographs to back up her claims. “I've been using the national health service here for years and, as usual, you can not fault the medical staff and the doctors and the medical facilities really are state-of-the-art, the staff are excellent but the building is shocking,” she said. “There are no smoking areas, not even in compliance with the new laws and under the stress doctors and nurses have to work, I fully understand why they smoke. There were two holes in the walls of my room covered with tape, apparently the walls are too weak to hold a TV, there were large areas with no safety glass and in fact on my floor, a 4.3 metre gap through which the daughter of a friend visiting me nearly fell through. In some areas, the walls are already peeling and breaking away and the stickers are peeling off the lifts which are marked wrong. “The toilet on floor P was filthy and full of rubbish and along my corridor there was a pile of orange peel and part of a plastic knife and it was there for the whole three days I was in the hospital,” she said. “Floor tiles are already cracking and my window was broken. These windows look lovely from outside, but inside they are thick with dust. What is more, in the pre-operating theatre room, which is supposed to be 100 percent sterilised, there was a huge brown stain on the ceiling which was leaking,” she added. “I can't fault the medical and hospital staff, I repeat, but it took them half an hour to find a wheelchair for me after the op. It's clearly a rush job and it is not going to be up in 65 years time like Son Dureta,” Burns proclaimed yesterday. “Not even the Wifi service works properly,” she added.