Safety Board investigates patient safety at bankrupt hospitals

Slotervaart hospital in Amsterdam (Photo: Arch/Wikimedia Commons)Slotervaart hospital in Amsterdam (Photo: Arch/Wikimedia Commons)

The Dutch Safety Board is launching an investigation into the way in which patient safety was handled after MC Slotervaart in Amsterdam and the MC IJsselmeer hospitals in Lelystad and surroundings were declared bankrupt last week. The Safety Board wants to examine how the interests of the patients were weighed before and during the bankruptcy process, reports.

The hospitals were declared bankrupt on Thursday. On Friday all patients in MC Slotervaart had to leave the bankrupt hospital before 3:00 p.m. Around 50 patients were transferred to other hospitals by ambulance. This was experienced as very stressful by many of the patients, healthcare professionals said, according to the newspaper.

According to MC Slotervaart, patients had to be transferred or sent home as soon as possible, because there was not enough staff to man the operating room and intensive care. This is because many of the specialized staff did not have a permanent contract, the hospital said. 

A restart is being investigated for the hospitals in Amsterdam and Flevoland. The IJsselmeer hospitals consist of MC Zuiderzee, MC Emmeloord, MC Dronten and a midwifery practice in Lelystad. The bankruptcy administrators are currently in discussion with several takeover candidates.  St Jansdal Hospital in Hardewijk recently announced interest in taking over some of the care in Lelysad.

The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, is debating the bankruptcies with Minister Bruno Bruins for Medical Care on Wednesday. All the parties in the Kamer want to know how the situation got this bad. Bruins previously also said that he was surprised by the speed of the bankruptcies.