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Groningen hospital closes operating theaters for sick staff

Two operating theaters of the Martini Hospital in Groningen are closed immediately and will remain closed for at least two weeks. The hospital feels compelled to make that decision because almost 10 percent of the employees are at home. About 80 operations have been postponed.

While the number of available staff decreases, the number of corona patients in the hospital is increasing and so more people are needed to care for them. “The flexible capacity has almost been fully utilized,” says the hospital. “This means that there is still very little stretch and that worries me”, says chairman of the board Hans Feenstra.

Well deployable

“It is important that our colleagues remain deployable, especially given the expectation that this situation will continue in the coming months.” He regards the temporary closure of the two operating rooms as “limited scaling down” of healthcare. The employees who are ill mainly have a cold or the flu.

In two weeks, the Martini Hospital will review the situation. “We realize that it is really annoying for patients that we cancel a number of surgeries at short notice,” says Feenstra. He hopes to “keep the impact as small as possible”.

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