Gozo General Hospital: exposed wires and no fire door despite recent blaze

Photographs show the pitiful, incomplete state of Gozo General Hospital four years down the road


The government does not appear to be getting much bang for its buck from Steward Health Care Malta’s purported investment in Gozo General Hospital.

Photographs made available to The Shift show exposed wires presenting a health hazard and even a lack of a fire door at the back entrance despite last Christmas Day’s fire that necessitated the evacuation of wards.

Photographs sent in by readers back up the resounding criticism directed toward the state of the Steward Health Care-managed health facility in Gozo, the island’s only hospital, at last Thursday’s Gozo Business Chamber Annual General Meeting.

Images show the hospital’s back entrance leading to the Hyperbaric Unit being without a fire exit door, and without any kind of door whatsoever, even though a fire had ripped through the hospital just two months ago and 59 patients had to be temporarily evacuated.

Some of the 59 patients who had to be evacuated from Gozo General Hospital after the Christmas Day fire. Photo: Facebook/Jo Etienne Abela

Other photographs show exposed wiring dangling above people’s heads as they traverse a corridor used to access the hospital’s wards from the back entrance, while medical equipment is being stored outside in temporary containers.

Exposed wires dangle over the heads of patients and visitors traversing this corridor

Reports reaching The Shift about the state of the hospital give additional credence to scathing remarks made by Gozo Business Chamber President Joseph Borg at last Thursday’s AGM, which was ironically held at the Barts Medical School Gozo campus.

“This is the fourth year in which the Gozo Business Chamber is holding its annual general meeting at this university, and the fourth year in which I have to repeat the same appeal: all the good this school has achieved will be null if the promised new hospital isn’t built,” Borg said.

“Has anything happened on this issue in the past four years? I personally know of nothing. There was a point at which plans being set for approval were mentioned but this now appears to have been forgotten.

“I don’t want to harp on about this, but Gozitans deserve better healthcare,” he said.

A woman walks down a corridor at Gozo General Hospital with exposed wires and conduits for other services hanging over her head.

Steward Health Care has held a public concession since 2018 on three of Malta’s hospitals – Gozo General, St Luke’s and Karen Grech – that includes a contractual obligation to build a state-of-the-art hospital in Gozo.

While the Barts Medical School in Gozo has been completed, the hospitals remain in a dire state.

Verdict on Delia case to have deal rescinded expected next week

In the meantime, a verdict is anticipated next week, after being delayed at the end of last month, on former opposition leader Adrian Delia’s court case to have the whole hospitals deal rescinded lock, stock and barrel.

The then-leader of the opposition had opened the case in his personal capacity against then-prime minister Joseph Muscat.

The hospitals’ contract – which saw the government sign over the St Luke’s, Karen Grech and Gozo General hospitals to Vitals Global Healthcare, which, in turn, sold the concession to Steward Health Care – was the largest public contract ever entered into by the Maltese government.

It also turned out to have been one of the biggest heists ever perpetrated in Malta. The deal has cost the taxpayer north of €2 billion and the bill is rising at a cost of approximately €190,000 a day. Steward Health Care acquired the concession for just €1, while millions of euros are alleged to have changed hands elsewhere.

Delia has petitioned the court to have the entire contract and all associated ancillary documents rescinded, insisting that, “Steward and their officials and those of the Maltese government must not be allowed to steal, defraud, and loot Malta’s coffers.”


Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Related Stories

‘Atrocious’ Villa Rosa towers ‘a case of the cart pulling the horse’ – NGOs
NGOs Din L-Art Ħelwa and Moviment Graffitti have joined
Abela’s arguments against Jean Paul Sofia public inquiry identical to Muscat’s
Prime Minister Robert Abela’s justifications for refusing to initiate

Our Awards and Media Partners

Award logo Award logo Award logo