‘Social distancing at Mount Carmel is not being respected due to overcrowding’

Miguela Xuereb

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Overcrowding is leading to a situation where social distancing is no longer being respected at Mount Carmel Hospital, the Mental Health Association said in a statement on Monday.

The Mental Health Association once again highlighted the devastating effect the coronavirus pandemic is having on people’s mental health. It noted that mental health was not factored in, in the national contingency plan aimed at addressing the effects of the pandemic. The association said that this has led to a situation where the detrimental effect on the mental health of service-users, their caregivers and their health professionals.

The association noted that the bed availability has drastically decreased as cases have increased, remarking that this led to a situation where wards at Mount Carmel Hospital are over-crowded, going against current social distancing health recommendations.

The psychiatric out-patients and the Psychiatric Unit at Mater Dei Hospital have also been removed. The association noted that this led to a situation that the only inpatient care available as at Mount Carmel Hospital which is experiencing a severe shortage of staff. It also deplored the decision saying that it ran counter to the government’s pledge to integrate mental health into mainstream healthcare as well as the recent recommendations by the World Health Organisation.

The Mental Health Association remarked that despite various promises and plans for mental health care system, Malta remains without an emergency psychiatric care service which would be available 24/7.

“We continue to lose lives to suicides and other tragic situations, as a result of this unforgiving void,” it said.

Ward closed off after health care worker tests positive for coronavirus
Health care worker tests positive for coronavirus

Mount Carmel Hospital halted all visits with immediate effect following a coronavirus outbreak in the hospital on 12 August.

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