• Comunidad Valencia Health Authority has suspended scheduled surgical operations due to covid hospital pressure.
  • Torrevieja Hospital say that they are still able to operate normally and will continue to do so.

As pressure on hospitals continues to increase due to the covid the Conselleria de Sanidad Universal y Salud Pública has suspended all scheduled surgical activity, except for those urgent operations that cannot be delayed. This was one of the organisational measures announced by the General Directorate of Health Assistance in response to the covid on Friday.

According to the general director of Healthcare, Mariam García Layunta, in the Valencian Community, as is the case across the rest of Spain and Europe, “we have recently seen a significant upsurge in the accumulated incidence ”. She said that “the number of cases is increasing, and that putting an increase in the pressure of care in our hospitals, both for hospital admissions on the wards and in critical care units.”

The Director reported that the health departments, as they did in the first wave, are now applying their contingency plans, which basically consist of “expanding spaces, as well as doubling the number of beds that will allow for greater healthcare capacity in the ward and in critical care units ”.

“At this moment we still have sufficient capacity to respond to the demands we are seeing and we also have other facilities that we did not have in the first wave, such as field hospitals that are ready and prepared as well as the new Ernest Lluch hospital ”.

The general director also said that, in addition, in November the Minister of Universal Health, Ana Barceló, issued an order where the resources of private health were made available to us as part of a public-private collaboration.

Use of new spaces and other organisational measures

Among the organisational measures that hospitals must now adopt within their contingency plans, Mariam García Layunta has cited the use of additional spaces “that were previously dedicated to other uses” and ” the suspension of those activities that are not urgent, for example scheduled surgery that can wait, because at this moment our priority is the care of COVID and non-COVID patients who require hospitalisation. We will now postpone any interventions that can be delayed and, obviously, when this is over we will then try to recover as quickly as possible”.

Other organisational measures adopted are the suspension of non-preferential diagnostic tests and scheduled admissions, except for those involved in rapid cancer diagnosis (breast and colon cancer screening, etc.).

Finally, García Layunta said that “we believe that, with all this, together with the measures that the Valencian government has adopted to be able to face the pandemic, and the responsible actions of the general public, we will soon be able to get out of this situation, without the capacity of the hospitals being exceeded, while continuing to guarantee care for all Valencian people”.