MEDICAL workers and patients joined forces outside Torrevieja Hospital on Friday to demand improvements during a visit by Valencia Health Minister, Miguel Minguez.
Minguez was at the hospital for a general tour and to be shown 20 new bedrooms for individual patients.
The largest number of protestors were laboratory staff who claim they were ‘sold out’ after the hospital passed into public ownership in October 2021.
Private management company Ribera Salud sub-contracted lab services to Torrevieja Diagnosticos.
The public management switch meant the 30-strong lab team, who worked for the hospital for 16 years, now face being left out in the cold, with the Health Ministry planning to have an ‘in-house’ lab service.
Staff feel they should have been taken on by the publicly-run Torrevieja health department.
Minguez told protesting lab workers that he would have a formal meeting with them to see if they can continue in their positions.
Other demonstrators gathered to criticise the overall mismanagement of Torrevieja Hospital and waiting times, especially for emergencies.
Jose Cano, who took over as health department chief three months ago, said: “Emergency service waiting times have been improving in recent months with an average wait of 2 hours and 35 minutes.”
Unions and patient groups have taken another view, but the previously very critical Torrevieja mayor Eduardo Dolon, conceded there had been ‘important improvements’ but that there was still work to be done.
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