State budget for hospital duty shifts cut once again

Greek hospitals face another difficult year as the state budget for duty shifts has been sliced by 7 percent to 225 million euros, the fifth annual cutback in a row.

According to a biministerial decision released on Friday, the sum of 225 million euros has been earmarked for the hospitals’ duty shifts, down from 242 million euros last year and 400 million euros in 2009 before the crisis broke.

Responding, unionists said that hospitals would struggle to cope. “With this kind of sum, we can’t perform duty shifts, as was the case last year,” Dimitris Varnavas, the head of the national union representing hospital doctors, told Kathimerini.