This possible scenario was admitted in the response that, at the end of September, the Minister of Health, Manuel Pizarro, gave to questions posed by the PSD parliamentary group.

Social-Democratic deputies questioned whether the minister could guarantee that the work on the new Alentejo Central Hospital, which is underway, will be completed by the end of 2023, so as to “not lose funding” for the Alentejo Regional Operational Program 2020.

In the reply, Manuel Pizarro stressed that “the efforts of all the teams” involved in the project to build the new hospital unit “are focused on the work being completed by the end of 2023”.

“Only the change in circumstances, beyond what is foreseeable at this moment, namely the worsening of the war in Europe, with all its implications, could condition the fulfilment of this objective”, said the minister.

However, he noted, “if that happens”, the ongoing projects “will undergo adjustments not only in Portugal, but also in Europe”.

“We hope that, even in the worst case scenario, mechanisms will be found to guarantee the financing of the Regional OP [Operational Programme], since the European Union itself will have to reassess the fulfilment of its own goals”, he said.

The new hospital, under construction since August, involves a total investment of around €210 million.

The future hospital unit, on the outskirts of the city of Évora, will occupy an area of ​​1.9 hectares and have a capacity of 351 beds in single rooms, which can be increased, if necessary, to 487.

With 30 intensive/intermediate care beds and 15 palliative care beds, the new unit will have, among other things, 11 operating rooms, three of which are for conventional activities, six for outpatient care and two for emergency care, five preoperative and 43 recovery stations.