Local Daily News 29th July

Up to six months of waiting in the province for scans or heart tests

Waiting lists are not the only evil suffered by patients who have to enter the operating room. Also tests to diagnose diseases such as cancer or heart and circulatory problems accumulate delays that in some cases reach six months.

An example is MRI, an imaging test that is used above all to detect injuries to organs and soft parts of the body, such as hernias, knee problems, or to diagnose tumours and study their extension. In departments such as that of Alcoy, the delay for these tests reaches 174 days, six months and in Torrevieja it reaches an average of four months. For a breast MRI you have to wait 159 days (5 months) in Dénia and 128 days (4 months) in Elda. This is stated in the data provided by the Ministry of Health in a response to the PP deputy, José Juan Zaplana, who asked to know what is the delay accumulated by the different diagnostic tests in each of the health departments of the Valencian Community.

Doppler ultrasounds, to see the circulation especially in the legs, also accumulate high delays in departments such as Alcoy, where they are close to six months. In Sant Joan, Elda or the General Hospital of Alicante, the waiting period exceeds one hundred days.

The delays in some departments for an echocardiography, a test used to see the structures of the heart, are also highlighted. In Marina Baixa there is an average delay of almost six months for this test and 4.6 months in the case of the Alcoy hospital. A little less time, 3.6 months this test takes at the Hospital de Sant Joan.

Also striking is the delay in colonoscopies that are performed outside the screening program and that are usually ordered by family doctors when there is a suspicion of colon cancer. In the Vinalopó hospital there is an average of 5 months and 4 in the case of Alcoy.

Contrast-enhanced X-rays, which are generally used to detect anomalies in the urinary system, have been used for over a hundred days in departments such as Alcoy, Marina Baixa and the Alicante General Hospital.

For the PP deputy and head of Health, José Juan Zaplana, the difference between the different departments in terms of delays is striking, so that there are hospitals with very low waiting times and others in which waiting times are skyrocketing . “There is a lack of structure, there cannot be first-class and second-class citizens depending on the locality in which they live.” Zaplana believes that it is unsustainable that there are delays “especially when they affect diagnoses as important as cancer.”

According to Francisco Maciá, from the Marea Blanca platform for the defence of public health, the pandemic has brought with it a disproportionate increase in waiting lists for diagnostic tests. “Patient follow-up is taking a long time and the most worrying thing is that there are delays in screening programs, such as breast cancer, since there are women who are being called after three years compared to the two that marks the protocol”. For Maciá, the solution to these problems of the waiting list should not be at the cost of giving more money to the private sector to take on tests, “because whenever it is outsourced it means not investing in the public system.

Finally, from the Patient Ombudsman, its president Carmen Flores also asks that all the machinery of the public system be put into operation in order to alleviate these waiting times. “If it is necessary to work in the afternoons, on Saturdays or Sundays, yes, paying people well.” Flores believes that “the excuse of the pandemic no longer serves to justify that everything is going wrong for us.”

The Ministry of Health renounces the forced transfer of doctors to hospitals where staff are lacking

The Ministry of Health has finally given up its initial proposal to forcefully transfer doctors to work in departments that have difficulty finding staff, as is the case in Torrevieja or Alcoy. The department of Miguel Mínguez has also agreed to pay more money to those who agree to travel to these departments.

This is reflected in a draft decree that this Thursday has gone ahead with the support of the Workers Commissions, UGT and the Intersindical, with the vote against CSIF and Satse and the abstention of the Medical Union. In the en, the doctors will receive 5,000 euros a year compared to the 4,000 that the initial proposal included. The nurses will take 3,250 euros per year instead of the 2,600 that were initially contemplated. Personnel with category C1 and C2, health technicians and management and services, will receive 2,000 and 1,500 euros each year. The lowest categories will have a consideration of 1,000 euros.

The draft Health decree also establishes what criteria a place must meet to be classified as difficult to cover. They will be those that remain vacant without coverage for at least three continuous months in the last 12 months.

In addition to receiving more money per year for working in these positions, professionals will receive other types of incentives, including the possibility of extending retirement beyond the legal age, since having worked in these positions will be merit for authorization. to continue working beyond the age of 65.

The Ministry of Health has provided other benefits for working in these positions, such as recognition for professional careers. In addition, health workers will have priority for participation in training activities directly related to their professional activity.

For Workers Commissions the new project presented this Thursday by the Ministry introduces other improvements that have deserved the vote in favour of this union. “They have committed to finding a structural solution to the positions that are difficult to cover, as it is framed in the human resources plan that we are going to start negotiating in September.” In addition, the agreements reached by the departments to share personnel, the so-called strategic alliance, will be public, so that for Workers Commissions the opacity that previously surrounded these agreements is eliminated.

For its part, the Medical Union has abstained, considering the incentives insufficient. “The opportunity that was expected from this decree has been lost, since we continue to consider insufficient the amounts destined to favour doctors, who decide to occupy positions that are difficult to cover. The 357 euros gross per month offered as an incentive seem ridiculous to us, and we do not believe they serve to motivate or encourage anyone and therefore not even to “patch” a solution, with which the problems will persist”, says Víctor Pedrera, general secretary of the Medical Union In the Valencian community.

Finally, from the CSIF they point out that they have not supported the project “because we understand that it is one more partial patch, which again responds to urgency due to the lack of foresight of the ministry,” says Dolly Prunés, president of CSIF Sanidad Comunidad Valenciana. Likewise, adds Prunés, “we consider that the incentives contained in the draft are insufficient and the approximate list of the positions affected is unknown.”

Fire in the high voltage light transformer in the Orihuela nursing home

A fire in the high-voltage electricity transformation centre in the Orihuela nursing home, on Las Espeñetas street, has caused a great scare without causing any injuries, since the fire has occurred in the transformer without affecting the building of the residence where the elderly are located.

Agents of the Local Police and firefighters from the municipal park have moved to the place. The warning occurred at 11:15 a.m., reaching the extension of the intervention to extinguish the fire until 12:20 p.m.

Fines of one hundred thousand euros for municipalities that do not separate the rubbish before it reaches the plant

The new state law on the treatment of solid waste, which came into force on June 30th after being approved in April, considers a serious offence to be non-compliance with the obligation to establish separate collection in municipalities with more than 5,000 inhabitants, as well as non-compliance of the maximum percentages of improper waste (poorly deposited in the container) that, where appropriate, are established by the municipalities themselves. The fines to the municipalities, upon complaint, range between two thousand and one hundred thousand euros.

Until now, the province’s town halls have not sanctioned citizens for this non-compliance (except for depositing the garbage before nightfall, specifically the organic one), and they have not received sanctions either, since the file is opened after a complaint from a third party. In this sense, Carlos Arribas, spokesman for Ecologists in Action, points out that “we are going to be very attentive to see if the municipalities comply with the law and if not, we will denounce it.”

At this time, the Ministry of Ecological Transition is processing the construction of two new landfills in Monóvar and the expansion of those in El Campello, Alicante and Xixona. The reality is revealing: 80% of the citizens of Alicante do not separate the rubbish that they take to the container.

The law establishes that waste must be collected separately and cannot be mixed with other waste or other materials with different properties. In the case of hazardous waste, the hazardous substances, mixtures and components that these wastes contain will be removed, before or during recovery, in order for them to be treated.

The incineration, with or without energy recovery, and the deposit in the landfill of the waste collected separately for its preparation for reuse and for its recycling are prohibited, with the exception of the waste generated in the operations of preparation for reuse and of recycling of this waste collected separately, which must be used for other available recovery operations and may only be used for incineration or landfill, if the latter destinations offer the best environmental result.

To facilitate the preparation for reuse and high-quality recycling, the City Councils have to establish a separate collection of, at least, paper, metals, plastic and glass.

Since last June 30th, bio-waste of domestic origin in municipalities with more than five thousand inhabitants, and before December 31st, 2023 for the rest. Separate collection of bio-waste will also be understood as separation and recycling at source through domestic or community composting. Textile waste before December 31st, 2024.

Cooking oils used before December 31st, 2024, as well as household hazardous waste to ensure that they do not contaminate other waste streams of local competence. Finally, bulky waste (furniture and fixtures) also before December 31st, 2024.

At the moment there is no municipal sanction in Alicante, nor in most cities, for not separating the garbage. The Alicante City Council does provide for the identification of users who deposit remains in the containers by means of a personal password in the new street cleaning contract in the bidding phase. This device will allow, where appropriate, to set tax incentives and rebates for taxpayers.

The City Council will digitise, in this sense, all the management of street cleaning and waste collection through the creation of a computer platform for the management and operation of the service, which must be open source that can be offered for subsequent reuse to other administrations. . This is included in the specifications of the new contract for 347 million euros for the next eight years.

The Councillor for the Environment, Street Cleaning and Waste Management, Manuel Villar, underlines that “the new contract will have a strong component of innovation and digitization, this being one of its most outstanding aspects, as a computerised management platform will have to be developed and control, which we want to be open source and can be exported to other municipalities and public administrations”.

Villar asserts that “we want to develop a reference digital platform that facilitates waste management and helps promote waste recycling, facilitates its collection and optimises street cleaning.”

The system will apply all the new management and control technologies and will also incorporate an application (web app) for registering and validating users, which will collect their contributions to recycling, the location of the containers, schedules and rules to follow. It will also incorporate the incorporation of electronic systems for access to containers for users through electronic cards and mobile phones with NFC system, in addition to the connected electronic closing system of the devices that will allow regulating the days and hours of use.

The new platform will allow comprehensive monitoring of the service by incorporating tracking devices by geolocation of vehicles, trolleys and street cleaning operators, as well as waste collection vehicles. In addition, operators will be provided with a device that will allow a permanent connection with the plant to provide warnings and notifications about the service or incidents that can be detected in real time.

It will allow the control of the works in such a way that the electronics of vehicles, containers and operators can be used, such as GPS tracking systems, electronic identification, weighing, computers, mobile phones, electronic locks with citizen identification or any other automatic system that guarantee the traceability of urban waste collection and street cleaning services.

The contractor will have a maximum period of one year to develop the different modules that will make up the computer platform for the management and operation of the service, having to present a calendar for its implementation within a month from the signing of the contract. The rights of the platform will belong to the Alicante City Council, which in turn will transfer them to the contractor for use.

A semi-drowned 73-year-old man with cardiac arrest has been saved in Guardamar

Yesterday, the lifeguards of the central beach of Guardamar del Segura took a bather out of the water, already unconscious and with cardiorespiratory arrest, who then underwent a cardiac massage maintaining his vitals until the arrival of the ambulance. The rapid intervention of the Red Cross has been key to saving the life of this 73-year-old man of Ukrainian nationality.

The local police also moved to the scene. The Emergency Information and Coordination Center (CICU) received the alert at 12:20 p.m., mobilising a SAMU unit. The medical team continued with advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation and other stabilisation techniques. Subsequently, with a serious and reserved prognosis, he was transferred with symptoms of drowning and recovered cardiac arrest to the University Hospital of Torrevieja.

The Red Cross indicates that it is the fourth cardiorespiratory arrest that has occurred on the beaches of Guardamar in recent weeks, managing to carry out all of them, together with the SAMU. In all cases, the profile is of an older person, usually with a medical condition or heart disease of some kind. In this sense, remember that heat always aggravates the danger. In fact, all these events are taking place in the central hours of the day, between 11:00 and 14:00. Therefore, they insist on prevention to minimise risks.

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