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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

“Certain things can't be hidden under the red carpet rolled out for the Troika...”


PRESS RELEASE

Certain things can't be hidden under the red carpet rolled out for the Troika...”

The government and the officials at the Ministry of Health may put on a show, trying to convince us that everything is getting better, but studies regarding the status of health care at a European level, prove them liars once again, mirroring the stark reality of the crisis in Greece.

According to the study of Eurofound (2013): “Impacts of the crisis on access to healthcare services in the EU”, referring to the impact of the financial crisis upon Health services in EU countries, in Greece in particular (without taking into account the even worse developments that have taken place during the past two years)

·         there was a 43% rise from 2007 to 2011 in people that have not been able to meet their medical needs due to the rising cost

·         spending on public Health has decreased by 12% in 2010 and by a further 14% in 2011

·         there was an increase in cases of tuberculosis, influenza, sexually transmitted diseases and even malaria that re-emerged, due to the drastic cuts in prevention and infection control measures, especially among vulnerable population groups

Furthermore, according to the article published by the prestigious medical journal The Lancet (Volume 378, Issue 9801, 22 October 2011)

·         there was a 40% rise in suicides in 2011 in comparison to 2010, while 25% of the callers in help-lines where facing financial difficulties

·         the Greek chapter of the Medecins du Monde estimates that the proportion of Greeks seeking medical attention from their street-clinics rose from 3-4% before the crisis to about 30%

The Lancet article ends with a warning: “In an effort to finance debts, ordinary people are paying the ultimate price: Losing access to care and preventive services, facing higher risks of sexually transmitted diseases, and in the worst cases losing their lives. Greater attention to health and health-care access is needed, to ensure that the Greek crisis does not undermine the ultimate source of the country's wealth -its people.”.

If one adds to all this the three million citizens without any social security and therefore without access to public health services, one can get a clear picture of the results of the “Memorandum” policies and the collapse of the National Healthcare System.

Is anyone listening?

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References:

The Lancet Volume 378, Issue 9801, 22 October 2011 - Alexander Kentikelenis, Marina Karanikolos, Irene Papanicolas, Sanjay Basu, Martin McKee, David Stuckler - Health effects of financial crisis: Οmens of a Greek tragedy
    
Eurofound (2013) Impacts of the crisis on access to healthcare services in the EU -



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