Greece: controversial healthcare reforms

A health reform passed by the Greek government majority is meeting with fierce criticism from large sections of society and in particular the doctors' associations. They fear the creeping privatisation of the public health system. The national press also takes a critical view of the reforms.

Open/close all quotes (GR) /

A consequence of underfunding

Because doctors are not paid enough in the public healthcare system, they are now being forced to seek out other options, Protagon fears:

“The law allows doctors at public hospitals to work in the private sector at the same time. ... The Ministry of Health believes that with this regulation it will improve the financial situation of doctors and at the same time create incentives for health professionals who have gone abroad to return. Of course, it would be ideal if the public health service paid decent wages for full-time employment, returning to pre-financial crisis levels. Since this is not possible, freeing up jobs for the private sector was only a matter of time.”

Efimerida ton Syntakton (GR) /

Only those with money get cured

Efimerida ton Syntakton fears the disintegration of the public healthcare system:

“The mechanisms of the law favour the big companies and are destroying an already ailing public healthcare system by abolishing its cornerstone, the full and exclusive employment of doctors, making employment relationships more flexible, and effectively driving physicians into the private sector. Just as the government spoke of citizens' 'personal responsibility' during the pandemic, it is now defending citizens' 'free choice', which is really a nice euphemism for blackmail: either you pay and get cured, or good night and good luck!”