Hospitals aren’t ready to face the Omicron variant. Many nurses have left

Estimates say that the government has three weeks to prepare.

Entering the Covid ward. Entering the Covid ward. (Source: Sme - Marko Erd)

Many Slovak hospitals are more unprepared than ever just before the next pandemic wave. Experienced doctors who left disillusioned have been replaced by fresh graduates, and dozens of nurses who resigned are yet to be replaced.

SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement
SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement

Health Minister Vladimír Lengvarský (OĽaNO) still hasn’t come up with a robust plan for so-called emergency medical facilities, where less serious cases would be taken care of and thereby alleviate some of the pressure on hospitals. Regional hospitals that the Sme daily spoke with claim that they managed to account for the loss of manpower during the second wave of the pandemic.

Related article Health Ministry gears up for Omicron, plans to establish emergency health facilities Read more 

However, the head of the Slovak Chamber of Nurses and Midwives Iveta Lazorová claims that hospitals and the government should stop acting as if it is business as usual.

“We have protested for years and warned of the coming disaster that is now upon us. Yes, we have reasons to be worried,” Lazorová stated.

The senior and most experienced nurses are leaving, as are young and frustrated doctors who are upset with the state of public hospitals.

The Health Ministry added that the healthcare system has had issues with the labour force for a long time now, and these problems also exist abroad. Spokesperson for the ministry, Zuzana Eliášová, has stated that experts are working on a solution.

“Medical staff, including nurses, received a bonus of €350 with their December paycheck, and talks on improving salaries are ongoing,” Eliášová stated.

The state of Slovak hospitals

The rest of this article is premium content at
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on and

Top stories

An illustrative photo.

Summer camp sexual abuse case begins

The scandal was revealed by a blog post published in March 2019.

21 h
Michal Šimečka

Slovak MEP runs for vice-president of European Parliament. What are his chances?

Observers agree that he would handle the position well.

17. jan

News digest: Slovak MEP runs for a top EP post, while the general prosecutor is criticised for Moscow visit

Michal Šimečka could become the highest-ranked Slovak in history in the European Parliament. Pressure waves from an eruption of the Hunga Tonga volcano in the Pacific felt in Slovakia.

20 h
Skryť Close ad