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TC hospital doctors ‘at a dead-end’

By Kyriacos Kiliaris

The local Dr. Akcicek Hospital is facing a mountain of problems which have essentially paralysed every department. Doctors of the local hospital are calling on officials to take measures or to close it down.

Meanwhile, medical staff faced with serious shortages of equipment and medicines are demanding solutions so the hospital can function.

The hospital, which has not had a working ultrasound device or a CT scanner for the past few months, is now left without the capacity to conduct biochemical blood analyses as the relevant equipment has been out of order for the past three days.

The hospital is currently only able to conduct blood tests that have to do with indices regarding heart failure and blood values.

Internal Medicine Specialist Dr. Ozcan Hudaverdi and Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist and Surgeon Dr. Tunis Ozdoganoglu spoke to the Turkish Cypriot media about “the dead-end in which the hospital is in”.

Dr. Ozdoganoglu said that, due to the lack of internists, specialist doctors like himself assigned to various departments, are being forced also to undertake shifts at the emergency room. “It does not make sense for a branch doctor to do shifts in the Emergency Room,” said Ozdoganoglu, who added that there are only three doctors available for the ER shifts.

He added that there are patients suffering from heart attack cases, all the way to broken bones, and there is no doctor in the hospital who can deal with these cases.

“This is a very risky situation,” noted Ozdoganoglu.

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He also said that there are evenings when he is the only doctor on duty in the ER.

“Just the other night, a woman came in with severe pain in her abdomen. Because we have no working ultrasound device, I had to send her to the public hospital in Nicosia with our ambulance.

“We are trying to keep the hospital alive, working understaffed, without basic equipment, while trying to provide health services to an overpopulated town.

“I am a specialist doctor, being forced to work in fields of medicine in which I am not specialised – it puts us and the patient’s life at risk. If there is a heart attack case, I will not know what to do,” said Ozdoganoglu.

He added that, at the moment, there was no cardiologist on staff at the hospital. “We can’t send every case to Nicosia,” he argued.

Ozdoganoglu also said the Emergency Room was faced with all kinds of shortages, making personnel’s tasks almost impossible. The doctor said that all such shortages had put the Kyrenia hospital at the bottom of the list in terms of quality health services.

“What’s more, after 11 o’clock at night, there is no receptionist to process patients. The doctors on duty have to manually register the patients,” added Ozdoganoglu.

Meanwhile, Dr. Hudaverdi said that Kyrenia’s Akcicek was the only public hospital in the town, having to cater for a population close to 100,000.

“All personnel working in the Emergency Room are at the point of rebelling against the situation,” added Hudaverdi.

He said that most staff were facing serious health and psychological problems. Hudaverdi called on authorities to take measures and upgrade the hospital’s services and resources.

He said that the Kyrenia Akcicek Hospital was on its last legs.

“Either find a solution to the problems of the hospital, or close it down,” concluded Hudaverdi.

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