Malta

The Geriatric Medicine Society of Malta

Some facts on demography and geriatrics in Malta…

Total population: 425,384
Percentage above 65 Yr: 17.87%
Percentage above 80 Yr: 3.86% (NSO, 2013)

Number of physicians: 1,795 (NSO, 2013)
Number of geriatricians: 23 (MMCR, 2016)
Total number of hospital beds: 1874 (HAR, 2010)
Number of geriatric beds: 240 (2016)

Geriatrics is recognised as a...

  • speciality since >20 years

Geriatric medicine is found in...

  • out-patient care settings
  • post-acute rehabilitation hospitals/clinics
  • nursing homes or long term care facilities

Members of the society

Total number of Members: 25
Geriatricians: 23
GP’s: 0
Internists: 0
Nurses: 0
Other therapists: 0

Other activities…

The society holds bi-annual evening educational meetings, usually spring and autumn.  For the meeting the society’s members are invited, but also the doctors working with the geriatric department are invited.  The meetings are normally addressed by doctors from other specialties.

The society in 2015 also held its first Geriatric Medicine Conference.  400 people attended from different disciplines including physicians, nurses, physio and occupational therapists and other allied health professionals.  The conference was addressed by 2 foreign speakers, Prof. T. Masud and Dr S. Conroy from the UK.  The aim is to hold such a conference every 2 years.

The focus of development presently is for geriatricians to have beds in the acute hospital.  This issue has been ongoing for years with different administrations of the country.  The present acute hospital, opened in 2007, initially had a ward to be run by geriatricians but along the way, before the hospital was inaugurated, it was taken over by the medics.  Since then other wards have been added but our requests have fallen on deaf ears.

As a consequence as pointed further above, geriatricians work in a post-acute ‘rehabilitation’ hospital and also offer consultation service in the acute hospital.  The post-acute rehabilitation facilities are also going to be run by a private enterprise in the near future with the government paying for the service, so that the service remains free for the patients.  In view of these changes the department has come up with a medical brief to be considered by the incoming investors.  Amongst the suggestions put forward were:

  • The setting up of an assessment unit.  The unit is aimed for those admitted to the acute hospital and who would benefit from rapid intervention by the geriatrician.  It will also be aimed for those elderly persons admitted from the day hospital or the out-patients of the geriatric department.
  • The setting up of fast and slow stream rehabilitation wards.  The aim is for those elderly patients whose rehabilitation period is envisaged to be less than 4 weeks are transferred to the fast stream and the other patients requiring a longer period of rehabilitation are transferred to the slow stream rehab ward.

Contact details

The president of the Society:
Dr. Mark Anthony Vassallo

The FB member in the EUGMS:
Dr. Mark Anthony Vassallo

Email: info(at)gmsmalta.com
Website: www.gmsmalta.com

News

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