On Saturday, family doctors demonstrated, with the Ministry of Health, against the appointment of non-specialized doctors in health centers, claiming that this option threatens the quality of care provided to the population.
The protest was organized by the Portuguese Society of General and Family Medicine (APMGF), and joined by the National Association of Family Health Units (USF-AN).
According to the APMGF, the protest will be attended by professionals and trainees from general and family medicine (FGM), but also by physicians from other specialties, other health professionals and representatives of patient associations.
According to the association, this initiative aims to “control the guardianship of a strategy that only disappoints the expectations of many Portuguese, offering them medical support from someone who is not a real family doctor”.
The dispute revolves around the possibility provided for in the state budget for 2022 to appoint qualified doctors, on an exceptional basis, to practice the profession independently (without specialization), while there are no conditions for guaranteeing family doctors to all employees.
The health minister has acknowledged that about 1.3 million people do not have a family doctor, a problem the government official attributed in part to the growth in the number of subscribers to the National Health Service (SNS), which totaled in May this year. year.year 10.5 million users, 455 thousand more than in 2015.
Marta Temido said, on Thursday, that the use of non-specialized clinics to fill the shortage of family doctors aims to respond to cases of acute illness, without calculating the percentages of general coverage and family medicine.
“We are not proposing that these people be family physicians. Even if these people accept this contract, they will not be family physicians, nor will they become non-family physicians,” the minister said at a parliamentary session on health. The Commission.
This possibility has already been challenged by the Forum of General and Family Medicine, claiming that the solution to the shortage of family doctors in Portugal is to retain the approximately 500 specialists trained annually in the SNS.
The National Federation of Physicians warned on Friday that 63% of vacancies were filled in June for new specialists in general and family medicine, the lowest number of positions available since the specialty was created.
The union structure indicated that it supports Saturday’s protest, in which the participation of the coordinator of the left-wing bloc, Catarina Martins, is also scheduled.
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