Minister sees benefits from health reforms

More than six public hospitals in Athens will be turned into urban health centers or institutions for the treatment of patients with chronic diseases as part of a shake-up in the healthcare sector, Health Minister Adonis Georgiadis told Sunday’s Kathimerini in an interview.

“Our aim is to strengthen the big hospitals, such as the Sismanogleio and the Attikon, so they can make full use of their facilities,” he said in reference to other hospitals in Athens being transformed into health centers.

“At the same time, we aim to strengthen primary healthcare, as other developed countries have done over the last 20 years with success. This will ease the pressure on the main hospitals.”

Georgiadis aims for more than 1,200 public healthcare employees to be placed in the government’s mobility scheme over the next few days. He said that new positions for them within the health system will be found by the end of September. They will be assigned to posts where there are shortages, said the minister.

“I repeat my pledge that there will not be a single sacking,” he said. “Mobility in the health sector is not just a prior action needed for the next bailout tranche but a valuable tool in the effort to improve and streamline the health system.”

Georgiadis added that similar changes would be made to health services in other parts of the country in the future.

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