Cyprus Mail

Severe understaffing of A&E putting patient care at risk say doctors (updated)


Inpatient care is being put at risk because of the “ongoing severe understaffing” at Larnaca general hospital’s A&E department, government doctors union Pasyki said on Monday.

In a statement, the union called on the Public Health Service organisation (Okypy) to seek out the true causes of the issue and to stop offering “the usual excuses”.

According to Pasyki, the pandemic has nothing to do with the understaffing situation nor is it valid to argue that the positions have been announced and will be filled at a future date.

“The constant departure of doctors and the announcement of positions for which there is little or no interest and for which most [responders] lack the appropriate experience should not just be seen as troublesome but as frightening,” the statement said.

But spokesperson for Okypy Charalambos Charilaou said “A&E departments are staffed with medical and nursing staff and wherever reinforcement is needed, additional recruitments are being made.”

Pasyki further claimed that the answer to the problem is obvious, as the lack of interest from qualified physicians is due to the disparity in working conditions between the public and private sectors, making posts in public healthcare an unattractive option.

“The conditions and terms of employment for doctors in the public hospitals, and especially in A&E departments, are far from the corresponding conditions that have been created in the private sector through Gesy,” it stated.

The announcement concluded that the state will have to answer to its citizens for the adoption of its strategy for modernisation, and address what its decisions and aims would be for reorganising and improving public hospitals.

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