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Sunday, May 18, 2014

A Patient Removed from Surgery Because He Can’t Pay




Press Release

A Patient Removed from Surgery Because He Can’t Pay
  

We have received a complaint from a patient that seemed incredible, even for us who see so many.  Sadly it turned out to be all too true, and confirmed by a social worker concerned.  Specifically, last week, a fifty-four year old unemployed and uninsured citizen who had serous heart trouble and who required immediate care and surgery was admitted to Evangelismos hospital.

The hospital initially refused to admit him.  The patient declared he would produce a welfare health booklet when it was issued.  Then, after the insistence of the patient’s attending physician, the hospital agreed to proceed with the surgery as the life of the patient was in danger.

The patient had been prepared for surgery, stretched out on the table, intravenous tubes inserted and shaved, when a  person from the accounting department rushed in and forced the doctors to stop because the patient had not given them the welfare booklet. 

It goes without saying that the patient had already asked the services at the municipality to hasten the issuance of the booklet, but what was he to do meanwhile?  Was he to wait for bureaucracy to increase its pace?

How could that accountant even get in the operating theatre to stop a surgery, over the authority of the surgeon, as a life was at stake?

Let the Greek Ministry of Health tell us where we can ask for help since it is evident that patient’s lives have now become nothing more than an accounting issue.

We expect answers from the Ministry of Health on this unacceptable incident and require an IMMEDIATE admission of the patient to hospital and the necessary medical procedures to be carried out to treat him.

1st update - 14/05/2014

We were just informed by the patient that he has been admitted to “Evangelismos” hospital by the Director this morning and tomorrow he will go into surgery.  We hope the directors of all public hospitals will likewise show some sensitivity to all uninsured patients and not only when the problems are publicized.  Cases like this one are not to be tolerated; this is not the role that the Greek Public Health System should play in our lives.  Accounts and money cannot be more important than a human life, and even more when it concerns three million uninsured citizens.  Whoever endangers human life will have to answer for it in a court – sooner or later

METROPOLITAN COMMUNITY CLINIC AT HELLINIKO 

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Post code TK16777, Elliniko, Attiki, Greece 
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