Vanesa Díaz, a resident of Cabo Blanco, is leading a neighbourhood initiative to push for the establishment of a palliative care unit at the Hospital del Sur. She is urging for the inclusion of this service in the initial phase of the proposed three-phase expansion of the centre in El Mojón, stressing its utmost importance.
The director of the Nuestra Señora de la Candelaria University Hospital, Roberto Gómez Pescoso, confirmed plans to incorporate a palliative care unit in one of the phases of the Aronero health complex, stating that the decision on its placement, cost, and timeline will be outlined upon completion and submission of the project for each phase.
Vanesa Díaz expressed discontent with the mere inclusion of the unit in the Functional Plan, asserting that diligent attention will be paid to ensure its integration in the initial phase. She emphasised the need to provide assistance to the sick and their families without delay.
Additionally, she advocated for the establishment of home support teams for terminally ill patients, along with the implementation of a palliative care programme in Primary Care to ensure the family doctor’s close involvement in the patient’s care.
Vanesa Díaz also called for improved communication among the existing unit at the Ofra Hospital, Primary Care, and Emergencies, stressing the importance of all parties being continuously informed about the patients’ condition to tailor treatment regardless of the facility they seek care from. She underlined that these measures require no additional investment and should already be operational.
The platform, represented by the website paliativostfsur.es, has garnered nearly 1,700 signatures in support within a month, prompting the question of what further action the authorities necessitate to implement urgent measures. They are also anticipating a meeting with the Minister of Health of the Canary Islands Government.
The Common’s deputy, Rafael Yanes, voiced his backing for the citizen initiative on January 30, labelling the demand as a vital necessity for the southern region. He underscored the substantial population growth in the area over the past 45 years and stressed the need to update Tenerife’s healthcare infrastructure to cater to this expanding population, not to mention the influx of tourists.
Rafael Yanes stressed the importance for the new Functional Plan being developed by the Ministry of Health to not only encompass the Palliative Care Unit but also a diverse range of services capable of meeting the needs of a continuously growing population.