At last week’s meeting of the ten municipalities that make up the Torrevieja Health Authority, José Luis Sáez, the mayor of Guardamar, proposed that consideration should be given to changing the name of the Torrevieja University Hospital.

Whilst indicating that the matter is not a priority issue at the moment, he said that the suggestion has been put on the table several times in recent months.

He said that the name “Torrevieja” denotes ownership of the facility that does not correspond to the reality of a service that is provided to nine other municipalities, including Orihuela Costa (30,000 residents), Pilar de la Horadada, Rojales, Guardamar del Segura, San Fulgencio, San Miguel de Salinas, Los Montesinos, Benijófar and Formentera del Segura, in addition to the hamlet of Torremendo and the Entrenaranjos macro-urbanisation (both in Orihuela).

The proposal generated some surprise among the attendees, especially many councillors for Health, as quite a few mayors were absent, who considered that it was not the time to raise this debate in light of the challenges currently facing the hospital.

The main one, according to Health, is that users do not notice any change in the services as the hospital management changes from management by concession to direct management.

The response of the attendees, including the new manager, Pilar Santos, formerly Medical Director of the Vega Baja Hospital in Orihuela, was that there are other more important issues to resolve at this time, particularly with regard to the transition of the staff, 1,400 workers, as well as expanding the portfolio of specialties in health centres and ensuring that the change from the private concession to public management has no effect on users.