Hospital districts in Finland are calling for an urgent national programme to tackle damage to hospitals caused by mildew, the newspaper Helsingen Sanomat reported.
Hospitals in Turku, Oulu, Jyväskylä, and in Helsinki are all in need of extensive repairs.
There are fears that although airborne fungi may not cause symptoms in all patients and hospital staff, some could cause chronic illnesses. In Oulu University Hospital, some patients have been moved in response to the smell of mildew.
Approximately 15% of the total floor area of Finnish hospitals requires urgent repair at an estimated cost of €400 million.
Terttu Savolainen, State Secretary from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health said that hospitals should not wait for Government subsidies being acting to deal with the problem:
“Instead of waiting for subsidies, the hospitals should take action immediately. According to the law, all factors threatening the safety of an employee have to be eliminated.”
Finland’s VALSAI project, which has the aim of developing and managing healthcare property in the country, should look into the situation, Ms Savolainen added.