The National Medical Rescue Team (UMKE) established a field hospital on the Romanian-Ukrainian border with the Ministry of Health.
I used to stay in their tent while doing news work at the border.
Young doctors and health workers were providing medical assistance to Turkish and foreign immigrants from Ukraine.
In the morning tent, as I was talking about a series of articles I had written about the problems of doctors and healthcare workers, President Erdogan’s most talked about speech hit the news sites:
“… the private sector gives a lot, they go there. I’m telling you frankly, if they’re going, let them go. We hire our doctors who have just graduated from university. We’re continuing here with our assistant doctors … “
Really, the tent was already cold, with this speech it got really cold. No one said anything.
But I understand what they mean.
The doctors who broke Erdogan
In fact, Erdogan did not have any significant warm developments that required him to be so strict with doctors. It was not in the written text he read, he said these sentences immediately.
No one understood why they broke their heart with such a harsh style, when they failed to fit doctors and health workers who were at the forefront of the epidemic while setting an example to the world.
Moreover the only problem of the doctors was not their salary. There are so many different issues that the whole health system needs a serious overhaul.
We’ve talked to dozens of doctors and specialists and listed health issues in 20 articles in a series of articles published in Habertturk on January 26, 2022.
Salary was just one of them.
In fact, while all of these issues will be addressed and a comprehensive system reform is expected, the president’s response has left doctors frustrated.
In response, several unions and some doctors went on a partial strike.
Good luck helping
In fact, work was under way between the three ministries to create regulations on at least some aspects of the health system, which has long been on the Orange Alert.
These will be announced as good news on March 14, Medicine Day.
In a sense, that sad statement overwhelmed the work done and the good news given.
In his speech on the occasion of Medicine Day, Erdogan gave good news in 5 cases.
These issues were the most complained about by doctors and health workers.
In short, the Gospels are:
1. Punishment has been increased for those who resort to violence against healthcare workers.
2. Compensation for defective treatment, which leaves many problems for doctors, will be resolved through the establishment of a professional liability board and doctors will not be victimized.
3. Highly complex pay system will be removed and salary will be paid with a single salary.
4. The condition of retired health workers will be improved.
5. Basic wages of family physicians will be increased.
In his speech, Erdogan tried to win the hearts of doctors by telling them good news as well as good news. Many doctors in the hall responded to the applause.
Doctors welcome with caution and against
After interpreting the gospel, I called many doctors. I wondered what they were thinking. The promises made were excellent, but I noticed that they were a little hesitant and cautious about their perception.
The reason is that the previously promised hikes were canceled at the last minute.
The reason they are bitter is because they have not yet been able to overcome the effects of those words.
The MediaMagazine website, one of the most important news platforms in the medical community, has reported statements without comment, but the comments below the news are not very appealing. Most physicians and health professionals believe that promises will not be kept and that good news will not be enough to solve problems.
The Ministry of Health must now take responsibility
The measures that need to be taken are of course important. A candidate for solving some problems.
However, the system is still going to give orange alarms in many cases, from medical faculty education to referral chains, from doctors’ busy working hours to balancing private sector government hospitals.
It is not clear whether the salaries of doctors will be increased.
A significant part of this is issues that do not require legal control and can be resolved at the initiative of the Ministry of Health.
For example, problems such as inhumane work and service conditions, such as a doctor looking at 200 patients a day in an emergency and the performance measurement system coming out of his or her sheer, are problems that can be solved by ministry control.
No one doubts the goodwill of Health Minister Fahretin Kokar. However, there is little hope that it will solve structural problems, fix the system and protect the rights of physicians.
The Ministry of Health is the responsible body that will follow President Erdogan’s statements, take the necessary legal action and implement them expeditiously.
Besides, it is the responsibility of the minister to remove the tension and mistrust between the doctors and the politicians.
The system should be repaired without a red alarm
In addition to political professional organizations such as the Turkish Medical Association, trade unions, professional associations and independent organizations are trying to address the issue of physicians.
It is the responsibility of the Minister of Health to work with them, at least to unite and to give hope to the depressed health workers.
We have a health infrastructure that we can be proud of, and a well-trained staff that has made a name for itself in the world.
If we fix errors before the system gives a red alert, both employee and patient satisfaction can be fixed together.
Unfortunately, neither the patient nor the healthcare provider is satisfied with the system at this time.