Tensions and suffering at work among staff at the Saint-Pons-de-Thomières hospital center

Tensions and suffering at work among staff at the Saint-Pons-de-Thomières hospital center

La pérennité de l’hôpital de Saint-Pons-de-Thomières, vital pour le secteur, est-elle en danger ? Diane Petitmangin – Midi Libre

Le maire André Arrouche tire la sonnette d’alarme face à l’hémorragie des personnels, notamment médicaux, à l’hôpital. En cause : "Un problème de gouvernance".

"We are here to treat people. Patients and staff are not tin cans. It takes humans!" The contrast is striking between the bucolic and green setting of the Saint-Pons-de-Thomières hospital center, where the birds chirp in complete peace, and the noxious climate which reigns within the establishment. At issue: "a problem of governance", as they modestly whisper over there.

The phenomenon is not new. Already in November 2022, the Force Ouvrière union launched a strike movement and a petition to denounce "the massive erosion of unreplaced health personnel" and denounce a situation tense. From now on, it is the mayor of the town, André Arrouche, who is alarmed by the hemorrhage of professionals. The councilor goes even further by emphasizing, in a press release, "that extreme and conflicting tension reigns between the medical profession, agents and management of the establishment, jeopardizing the proper functioning of the hospital.

L’ARS has ordered an audit

"There are indeed concerns among the staff. This is why we approached the ARS (Regional Health Agency)who, this time, heard us and triggered an audit. We therefore remain suspended from the restitution of this one, which should take place soon. But we have good hope because the supervisory authority has really heard our voice, recognizes Fabienne Thivand, secretary of the FO union, while emphasizing her duty of reserve so as not to not say more.

Similarly, Josian Cabrol, the president of the supervisory board of the hospital and president of the community of communes of Minervois in Caroux "does not wish communicate until the audit has been presented to staff representatives and administrators" – the restitution of the ARS should take place this Tuesday, June 18.

A significant turnover

A course of action that most doctors, executives or employees have adopted, "in order not to risk radiation". According to certain people, however, who testify on condition of anonymity, it is the management and governance policy of the current director that is in question . "He’is a very authoritarian man. The most appropriate adjective is undoubtedly "Jupiterian" : he cannot bear not being aware of the slightest thing, does not tolerate any initiative unless he’s not aware of the slightest thing; rsquo;was not informed and given his approval and does not communicate with the staff", relates a witness.

Certainly, the results are not negative in all respects:"Thanks to him, there was the extension of the hospital, he created the UHR (Reinforced accommodation unit for residents with severe behavioral disorders, Editor's note) and finances are healthy but he has difficulty in his relationships with people". Corroborating sources indicate people removed from their posts or "put in the closet" overnight. "Hence a significant turnover: people arrive but don't stay and there is a permanent shortage of staff"< /em>.

The sustainability of the hospital at stake ?

This is what worries the Saint-Ponais chief magistrate:"It’is the only hospital in the area, which provides emergency care on weekends with the help of the fire brigade. However, these constant tensions and pressures are causing health professionals to break down. Many have already left, some are seriously considering it and others are on sick leave. If nothing is done, the sustainability of the hospital will be in jeopardy."

The Regional Health Agency, in a message addressed to the editorial staff of Midi Libre this Friday, June 14 in the evening, is intended to be reassuring: "Very close support for this establishment is currently being carried out by the ARS teams. An audit of the establishment has been carried out and will be returned soon. The ARS is preparing the creation of an interim contract by the Castres-Mazamet hospital center, whose mission letter is being finalized. However, the quality and safety of care have not to date been impacted by the difficulties encountered by the establishment. The ARS is working on longer-term solutions to strengthen this hospital establishment in its territory."

We tried to contact the director of the establishment but he, absent until June 30, did not respond.

The hospital under the microscope

The inauguration of the "new" Saint-Pons-de-Thomières hospital center took place on January 26, 2024 but the hospital already existed in the 13th century! From the 15th century until the 1970s, it was located on rue du Barry before migrating to the heights, in the Frescatis district. At that time, a retirement home completed it. In 1986, the Somail asthma center was attached there, before closing in 1995.

Today, the hospital center has an Ehpad, a multi-purpose follow-up care and rehabilitation center (SSR) to promote the return to autonomy of adult patients, an SSR specialized in addictology (SSRA) and a home nursing service (SSIAD) for a workforce of more than 200 employees.

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