Given the expected increase in coronavirus cases in the coming days, the Junta de Andalucía regional government has decided that the Carranque sports complex in Malaga city will be converted into a large hospital for patients of Covid-19, with a capacity of more than 400 beds.
These facilities have been chosen because of their proximity to the Hospital Regional (formerly Carlos Haya), which will facilitate the transfer of health professionals.
The Junta has ruled out converting the Palacio de Ferias y Congresos for the time being and is considering other options, including the reopening of the Hospital Pascual, a private centre that for many years served thousands of patients sent by the public health service.
With an increasing shortage of beds, Malaga's biggest hospitals, the Regional and Clínico, have been restructured. The otorhinolaryngology, plastic surgery and general surgery departments of the Hospital Regional have been moved to the Hospital Civil; in the next few days the cardiology department will move to the Hospital Materno. This will mean that there will be four floors available for the admission of new patients with respiratory pathologies who require isolation.
For its part, the Clínico will have more than 200 beds (twice as many as before) for the admission of patients with Covid-19 and is also working to increase the number of intensive care beds (currently 18). The isolation area in the emergency department has also been increased (from one to three modules), as well as the number of consultation rooms (from two to four).
Another 51 beds will also become available once the transfer of non-Covid-19 patients to the Hospital del Valle del Guadalhorce is complete.
Accommodation for health workers
The Junta has also responded to the call from 160 front-line doctors and nurses across the province for accommodation so that they don't have to return home and risk infecting their families by opening up the Residencia de Tiempo Libre holiday complex in Marbella and the Atarazanas hotel in Malaga city for their use.
The Junta-run complex is less than four kilometres from the Hospital Costa del Sol and has 150 villas, each with two double rooms. The hotel, meanwhile, is in Malaga city centre and has 39 rooms.