Concerns about increased absenteeism at Son Espases.

29-05-2017Pere Bota

Absenteeism at Son Espases Hospital increased by 20% during the first quarter of this year in comparison with January to March 2016. This equates to 390 members of staff having been off for one day.

The hospital's managing director, Josep Pomar, has written to heads of departments about the management's concern with absenteeism. There is particular worry regarding short-term absences for the same illness. Pomar says that there can be several reasons for absenteeism, with illness being one. But when there is such a significant increase from one year to the next, he wonders if "other circumstances" are influencing the rise.

In order to assess the reasons for the increased absenteeism, a working party of heads of department and personnel has been created. Pomar stresses that absenteeism has an impact on the hospital's organisation and that it can be very harmful to units where it is at its highest.

As well as organisational problems, there are additional costs as a result of absenteeism. If the current trend continues, he notes, it would mean an extra one million euros for bringing in staff to cover for the absentees. This burden on the hospital's budget could result in certain improvement projects being unfeasible because of a shortage of funding.


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Steve Riches / Hace over 4 years

Arthur (below) you paint a picture of skiving staff who are incapable of proper communication. I spent a total of 5 weeks as a Son Espaces patient last year and i simply do not recognise the picture you describe. The professionalism of all staff shone through, from a mixed-race surgical team which included Italian, German, Hungarian and Spanish, some of the nurses were not Spanish, similarly the cleaners and catering staff, physiotherapy, radiology etc., but all the people I encountered were extremely dedicated and cared for patients with true professionalism. There were two exceptions, one of the surgeons who stupidly told me I should get on the next easyJet flight and go home - "advice" that would have almost certainly resulted in my death, and one nurse whose attitude was brusque and unhelpful. From the hundred of staff I encountered I'd say that is pretty good! Teamwork was excellent and I felt in good hands and I am most grateful for the care and treatment I received. To say I was close to death twice is no exaggeration, and without the total teamwork at Son Espaces I would not be posting this. A harder-working group of people you will struggle to find. I don't doubt that the intensity and hours of the work do lead to stress. Any absentee rate needs investigating, but do not just guess at the causes.


Arthur / Hace over 4 years

Absenteeism is rife is public sector industries. Self employed people work because if they do not turn up they do not get paid. This is the crisis also for our NHS. Plus we have many persons of multi language in our hospitals and this will naturally lead to many mistakes of "Lost In Translation" so medical accidents or negligence, will occur and then the state has to pay out large sums in "medical negligence" claims. This occurred many times in my work, where I would ask a member of the team to do something but they would not quite understand and do something differently.