Greek state hospital workers protest cuts
Striking state hospital workers and teachers protested in Athens on Wednesday, demanding back pay and calling for action on staff shortages. The 24-hour strike by doctors, nurses and paramedics left state hospitals functioning with emergency staff. The strikers argue that shortages are the result of government policies imposed as part of the country’s bailout programme.
Specifically, The Panhellenic Federation of Public Hospital Employees (POEDIN) notes that 50 intensive care units remain closed with their staffing inadequate while safety concerns are noted, whereas hospitals don’t have medical and pharmaceutical supplies. The contracts of 190 workers employed in intensive care units via the Hellenic Center for Disease Control and Prevention (KEELPNO) were not renewed causing staff shortages.
The hospital employees demand:
♦ Free Public Health accessible to all
♦ Adequate staffing and funding of hospitals
♦ Temporary staff to be made permanent
♦ Workers contracts to be renewed for the execution of community programs
♦ The inclusion of medical employment in the category of heavy and unhealthy professions
♦ Regaining of bailout losses