Alcoy’s Virgen de los Lirios Hospital’s pressure reaches a critical point as doctors and nurses continue to battle an increase in COVID-19 cases. An internal memo leaked to the public on social media warns that the hospital is on the verge of being overwhelmed as it tries to cope with 50 patients infected with the deadly virus.
Because of the uptick in cases, all non-urgent surgeries have been suspended, and primary care workers are asked to help COVID-19 specialists.
As explained by the delegate of the Medical Union-CESM in Alcoy, Alberto Acosta, the problem is that “Primary Care is at the same level or worse” than Specialized. “The employees are physically and mentally exhausted, asphyxiated,” he says, and “not even on days off is it possible to rest” because the phone keeps ringing with messages asking for volunteers to work.
However, Acosta emphasizes, “it has been seen that working more does not work,” in the sense that this effort is useless if there are no stricter actions by the administration.
The union delegate emphasizes that “the current measures are not enough” since the night curfew does not prevent, for example, that the terraces and shopping streets can be full in the afternoons, with the consequent risk of crowds. For this reason, it is committed to increasing restrictions on mobility or leisure, as well as increasing control so that the rules are met, and above all, greater awareness.
Acosta criticizes that “at the beginning of December there were already indicators that things were not going well” when “the residences fell.” There are already three nursing homes in Alcoy where outbreaks have been registered.
The third and fourth floor of the hospital is full of patients infected by the coronavirus, and the worry is that it will only worsen following the Christmas and New Year holidays.