Action of Healthcare Professionals: Downward Sector – Yatkin Report

Doctors protest in front of a hospital in Eskiehir during a February 8 protest. (Photo: Turkish Medical Association)

In recent months, there has been an increase in the number of health workers, especially physicians, leaving their jobs. Leaving healthcare workers is not the same as shutting down production lines. It’s hard. Long internal calculations require fine planning. Because it is their “patients” who suffer directly, the rulers whom they try to make their voices heard and they want to protest. Which is why they often don’t like to leave their jobs. The magnitude of these actions indicates that the discomfort is very advanced.

In fact, you may have noticed in the news that the working condition of the health workers is deteriorating despite the fact that the country’s agenda has been filled with crisis after crisis. Low wages, long hours (when I say long, really long, such as 36 hours in 48 hours), increase violence and widespread violence. In fact, the problems are not new, they are mostly the result of years of experience, but what has happened since the beginning of the epidemic has been patient.

We clapped on the porch.

When confronted with a deadly virus unknown at the beginning of the epidemic, our only assurance was the ability of Turkish healthcare professionals to deal with the chaos. We went to the verandah and thanked him. Indeed, in the anxious excitement of the first wave, they were very successful in intensive care. They did not stay with him. They went from door to door, saying that this was not a job for which we were trained. Physician, Nurse, Dentist, Orthopedist. Ophthalmologists with thirty years of experience have not told us what to do with it, they have created a covid polyclinic. In fact, maternity assistants, who needed special training, worked as intensive care nurses for more than two years in a row to keep the newly opened intensive care units operational. They have not been able to reach their relatives for weeks because of an unknown virus. They were both very tired and came in contact with the virus up front. We have dedicated hundreds of healthcare workers to Kovid until the vaccine arrives.

In return, what did we do without applause one evening on the porch? What I think is as follows: We did not treat covidia as an occupational disease. Again, the health workers themselves have raised money to protect the children of the health workers we have sacrificed in Kovid. We said we would get new health workers. We did not find it, the opening of each new intensive care unit meant an increase in the working hours of health workers, whose number did not increase. We have revoked their permits and banned them from retiring. After a young doctor died in traffic after a 36-hour shift, we said we would improve working conditions, but nothing came of it. Due to the rising cost of living and long working hours, health workers who did not have time to spend on cheap shopping wanted to improve their salaries. We have prepared a bill (for physicians only, excluding other health workers, so that there can be healthcare without them).

While all this was going on, we did not realize that for some unreasonable reason, some unjust people got angry and threw the health facilities together, beat the doctors and nurses, crippled them in such a way that they could not do their job, or even killed them. . The pregnant nurses were kicked out, the president came out and said, what are you doing with my nurse? He did not say.

The state’s health workers are behind the violence

Medicine was not easy in this country. When I was a young therapist, I also kept 36-hour shifts. I’m glad my shift came at the beginning or end of the holiday, not in the middle of it. I was helpless. I have spent hours and hours on medical supplies, blood, etc. to solve the problems of my patients in dysfunctional systems. But I was not working in an environment of violence and humiliation like today. Even in a small town, away from all my relatives, I felt safe. At that time both doctors and health workers were respected. There were also vultures and bullies, who were prone to violence in society at that time. However, they did not think of infecting health workers. The “state” was behind us.

The first situation changes with the famous general. Compulsory service, which he called unaccountable, bookless, unjust and illegal, was criticized when he aimed at doctors saying, “I say hold the flag, how much will you pay.” We have entered an era where everything, including health, even areas that should not be done, has been privatized and service recipients have been “customized” through its broad path. These customers were also voters. The easiest way to ensure customer / voter satisfaction was to turn health workers into “slave servants” who should be humiliated at every opportunity and in every way. Moreover, when the money ran out and the health care system, which cost more in unplanned and unplanned ways, became ineffective, only these slaves were left to suffer more. That’s what it is today: a poorly planned health care system. A health financing and organization based on the allocation of resources for a specific interest group rather than an economic system that focuses on equality and offers proven initiatives. Inevitably it is not sustainable. Targeting healthcare workers as the cause of unavoidable patient dissatisfaction in an unstable system. We know that cheap scenario from other areas. It is like blaming shopkeepers and supermarkets for food inflation, which is the result of bad agricultural policies and dishonest monetary policy.

Let’s find out what happened in African countries

In fact, it is clear what to do. The first is to protect health workers from the highest levels of the state. Publicly, relentlessly, publicly. Rapid formulation of the Health Violence Bill, which the TTB has already drafted. Recruitment of thousands of health workers, many of whom are under the minimum wage, work in dire conditions or are transferred to other sectors, as bait by the public in private hospitals. Restructuring the wages and retirement rights of health workers.

In the long run, private health care with extremely high cost-efficiency ratios, which even the richest country in the world, the United States, cannot maintain, abandons the so-called misconduct law and moves to a health system. The principle of the social state.

Otherwise, our medical faculties will continue to produce graduates who prefer to be cashiers in Norway rather than doctors in Turkey with high costs. In our country, the cost will be very, very high. How do I know? In the early 2000’s, for the UN agency I worked for, I had the due diligence of a health worker, which included several countries in East Africa. These countries froze the salaries of government employees, especially health workers and teachers, and reduced the number of workers in the 1990s, due to the mind-blowing “structural adaptation” program of the World Bank and the IMF. As a result, many physicians and nurses from these countries immigrated to countries such as England and Canada to become babysitters or social workers. To fill the remaining dramatic service gap, many international organizations have run programs for more than a decade. Accelerated education, compulsory service conditions, scholarship education, etc. After all, the money spent on these programs was more than the salary that those people had previously avoided. The quality of manpower obtained is also very low compared to those who have gone.

The “Health Transformation” program is also a World Bank program, although the AKP government has kept it secret. If you want, you can find our program in Turkey from the World Bank report. This “health transformation” is the Turkish version of the structural adaptation programs I mentioned above. Therefore, it leads to the same result. Let’s learn from the experience of Africa. Let’s get back to this point as soon as possible so that we don’t fall into the same situation.

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