”Cascais Hospital reiterates its total commitment to safety in providing care to the population, maintaining Neurology support for patients who come to the hospital, making use of the referral network defined by the National Health Service, whenever necessary and as required”, stated the unit in a clarification note released following an alert from a group of doctors regarding the lack of conditions in the Neurology service.

In an open letter addressed to the Ministry of Health, the President of the Medical Association and the Executive Directorate of the National Health Service and published by the National Federation of Doctors (Fnam), the more than 20 specialists in internal medicine at Cascais Hospital, a partnership public-private, report a “serious decrease” in assistance capacity.

“Since August 2023, there has been a decrease in the care capacity of the Neurology Service of this hospital, as a result of the departure of several neurologists from this institution, including the risk of loss of training suitability”, they warn.

In the letter, the experts explain that currently the Neurology Service is “formally composed of just one doctor, who has reduced hours, not having the capacity to ensure hospitalisation (…), or even adequate support for emergencies or hospitalization for the remaining specialties”.

“There are also two other doctors who collaborate as service providers only in providing consultations, but still with a clear inability to meet the need for follow-up of patients with pathologies of this nature, namely diseases with high prevalence such as cerebrovascular diseases, epilepsy and dementia syndromes”, they add.

They also mention that the ability to carry out tests such as Doppler ultrasound of the neck vessels, electroencephalogram, and electromyography, among others, is also compromised, “delaying and complicating diagnoses”.

The president of the Order of Doctors has already expressed concern about the allegations and will meet with clinicians.

Carlos Cortes told Lusa agency that he had received reports a few weeks ago, which he considered “worrying enough” to lead him to go to that hospital.