The District Coordinating Committee of the Bloco de Esquerda/Algarve defends, in a statement, that the solution for the Birth/Maternity Block at the Portimão hospital is not to close it, but “to bet on more resources and with quality”.
From the perspective of the bloggers, «more public investment is needed, hiring the necessary pediatricians and obstetricians, in addition to other human resources, creating incentives and valuing their careers».
In this way, adds the BE, «doctors are being forced into the private sector» and their «unfair competition» with the National Health Service is avoided.
This is indeed, in his opinion, «a responsibility that belongs to the central power, in this specific case to the government with an absolute majority of the PS».
BE recalls that this structure «has been closing, steadily, over several periods, due to a lack of paediatricians», with one of these periods taking place «around Christmas and New Year».
«According to the Centro Hospitalar Universitário do Algarve (CHUA), which integrates the hospitals of Faro, Portimão and Lagos, the lack of pediatricians led to a reorganization of services articulated between the hospital units of Faro and Portimão during the end of the year, “in order to guarantee the best health care to the population”», recalls that political force.
When it was closed, «assistance in the pediatric emergencies at the Hospital de Portimão was provided by non-specialist doctors, functioning as a basic emergency service, with hospitalization carried out by the Pediatric Emergency Service of Portimão. Faro».
BE also recalls that CHUA states "that it has been working to resolve the lack of human resources by hiring new professionals for the year 2023".
Now, according to the blockers, «the intentions and statements of the CHUA fall from the ground up and only serve to excuse the government for the serious responsibilities it has in letting the services in the maternity of Portimão deteriorate, at risk of total closure».
BE adds that the birth ward in Portimão will close «on weekends until April, obliging pregnant women with more than 22 weeks of gestation to travel to the hospital in Faro, 70 kilometers away».
In the opinion of the Bloco de Esquerda, «this is an unacceptable situation, of extreme violence for women in labor and that jeopardizes the SNS in the Algarve and, in particular, the maintenance of the delivery block in Portimão. There are pregnant women who, from the Western Algarve, have to travel more than 100 kilometers to reach the maternity of Faro».
Therefore, BE argues that, «in order to solve the problems of the maternity hospital in Portimão, keeping it permanently open and providing good care, as well as improving the SNS in the region», it is «imperative» to tackle the problems head-on .