'Empty' St Luke’s hospital costing taxpayers €2 million

Country forking out almost €2 million in salaries for ‘abandoned’ St Luke’s Hospital workers, according to Chris Fearne.

€1.9 million were being forked out from the country's coffers to pay workers employed at St Luke's Hospital, "an abandoned hospital".

Speaking in parliament, backbencher Chris Fearne said he was shocked to find out that such amounts were being spent, despite the majority of the St Luke's Hospital building was not in use.

According to Fearne, the money was being spent in salaries for workers employed for means of security, maintenance and upholding of the hospital's grounds.

"St Luke's Hospital is an abandoned resource which was left abandoned for six years. While parts of it are being used by Malta Enterprise and for rehabilitation purposes, the majority of the building remains empty," Fearne said.

He argued that despite the building being situated in a prime site, yet it was not being utilised - not even rented out.

"But what shocked me most was that this hospital is till costing the taxpayers €1,900,000 in salaries for something which is abandoned."

Fearne also lamented a "gap in manpower" which afflicted the health department. He said that red tape was hindering the engagement of health professionals. According to the Labour MP, it took six months for the department to employ a nurse or a doctor even though there would be an urgent demand.

"This means that we are not doing all that is necessary to ensure we are providing patients with the best service. It is important that we address this human resource problem," he said.

Carras1 I don't agree. We have more than enough hotels and the property is PUBLIC PROPERTY not private property and must remain PUBLIC. It shoudl be used for a public purpose as suggested bot by myself and others. Why waste 2 million every year when the governemnt has a huge demand from people to be accomodated at an old pepoles home and also we have all the problems at Mater Dei. So better use it as a secondary hospital and an old peoples home rather than not being used and costing us so much simply to maintain it.
Part of the PN inheritance. St Lukes must be rehabilitated and used for non-urgent cases nto requiring specialization found at Mater Dei and also as a old people's home which also generates income for the government and reduces the backlog of old people wanting to enter into an elderly home.
Rita Pizzuto
I too am amazed that this building is not used, and not just for the expenses it is costing Malta. The building's prime position overlooking Msida Creek would make for a grand hotel. Therefore I think the government should plan what to do with what in a few years time, if not used and left to dilapidated, could become an eyesore. I am sure That if government decides to make its intentions known and issues tenders, there would be many Maltese and/or foreign entrepreneurs who would show an interest. A hotel over there could become a monument for the tourism industry.
it is a crying shame for such a building to be underused. Maybe a lot of government offices can relocate there - plenty of parking if nothing else! Or what about an old people's home like St Vincent de Paul rather than just a rehabilitation hospital.
Priscilla Darmenia
it could accomodate all the ministries and serve as a one stop shop.
This is prime site and yet it has been in a state of abandonment for a few years now. Why not issue expressions of interest for development by the private sector or on PPP basis?