Pordenone, January 12 - Hospitals in the province of Pordenone have been forced to suspend surgical operations scheduled for Monday in order to cope with a flu epidemic, sources said Friday. The three hospitals - in Pordenone, San Vito al Tagliamento and Spilimbergo - have had to make extra bed space available to ensure the proper management of urgent flu cases, the sources said. "The decision was taken to cope with higher flows determined by the peak in the flu epidemic, with chronic illnesses linked to the virus becoming acute again, as well as an unusual overload in surgical emergencies," health director Giorgio Sclippa told ANSA. He said that "for now", the measure only regarded Monday's operations. But it may be extended, he said, if the emergency were to continue.