Hospital emergency departments in the Balearic public health service are inundated and the flu season hasn’t yet started. The UGT union’s public services federation says that Balearic hospitals are already overstretched. With flu yet to hit, it is warning that IB-Salut service needs to take urgent measures.

Sources at the health service are acknowledging the increased patient load and say that its contingency plan for dealing with winter sickness is being put in place. This involves opening more beds, taking on additional personnel and transferring patients to other hospitals.

The UGT reckons that forty patients have been left waiting for a bed at Son Llàtzer and others at Son Espases as well. Both hospitals’ emergency departments are at full capacity, with some patients being located in corridors and the hospitals’ abilities to cope made more difficult by the lack of beds at Inca and Manacor hospitals. These two hospitals are currently at 100% capacity.

Staff at Son Llátzer’s emergency department are saying that the situation is even worse than that which the union is describing.
This week there have been 59 patients waiting for beds, while the corridors have been full. Some patients are just having to be seated.

Personnel are, therefore, writing to both the hospital’s management and IB-Salut in requesting more resources and more beds. According to the health service, on Tuesday afternoon there was a total of 84 patients waiting for a bed in emergency departments: 33 at Son Llàtzer, 30 at Son Espases, nine at Inca, six at Manacor and a further six at Can Misses in Ibiza. Under the contingency plan, Son Llàtzer has now added 24 beds and anticipates opening a further ten. Son Espases plans transferring twenty patients to Sant Joan de Déu, while Manacor will be moving four to the Hospital de Llevant in Porto Cristo.