The government considers that competencies in the field of health have been transferred to the municipalities from Friday, despite requests to postpone the deadline by the mayors, who consider the funds allocated to perform tasks such as running health centers insufficient.
At a time when it was only approx. 30% of the rooms accepted the competences to be decentralized in healththe outgoing minister in charge of local administration, Alexandra Letau, rejected the postponement, but cautioned that although the government considers these competencies to be transferred to the municipalities, in reality they only come into effect when each of the departments involved Signing a document with the central administration outlining what is being transferred and considerations. He stressed that the signing of these documents does not have a deadline.
In other words, although “D-day” is officially a Friday, in practice the process can continue at Health in time.
Among the competencies that should be decentralized in this area is the responsibility for Operational and financial management of health centers in your geographical areanamely the maintenance, maintenance, and management of equipment (excluding medical equipment), participation in the planning, management and investment of new primary health care units, including construction, equipment and maintenance, and management of personnel for health center operational assistant positions (ACEs).
The Federation of Public Administration Front (FESAP), which is following the process, specifically regarding the transfer of officials from the Ministry of Health to the supervision of the municipalities, hopes that the new government Giving impetus to the decentralization of health, highlighting the “difficulties” felt by rooms that have already accepted the operation.
“at education [a transferência de competências] It was going on normally, and many circles had already joined. Concerning Health was more difficult. The mayors themselves, in addition to the lack of enforcement of existing legislation for health workers, complain about this Financial package missing. Hence some difficulties with regard to the field of health”, considered Jose Abrau, Director of FESAP.
The organization has met with local authorities to establish decentralization in these two areas, which means transferring supervision of workers to municipalities, and health is undoubtedly “backward compared” to other areas.
“It is time, at the beginning of this government, to make an assessment and see what will fail in the end, and point naturally towards correcting it. Now hopefully, with the new government in place, on other terms, it will eventually be possible to progress better,” he added.
defend it Decentralization will bring services closer to citizensallowing for greater quality and savings, sees José Abrau Compliance with the law is essential to the success of the operation Until “the relevant financial packages reach the municipalities,” so that “services continue to be provided and workers are not harmed.”
He pointed out that some rooms are facing difficulties in implementing specific rules for health workers, namely the payment of overtime wages, which have their own regulations in this field. A meeting has already been requested by the National Association of Portuguese Municipalities (ANMP).
José Abrau also highlighted that when discussing certifications for the transfer of competencies, unions were given guarantees to protect the law and workers’ rights.
“Therefore, there is a need for a more homogeneous organization, which is not only based on the vision of every mayor, every mayor, every municipality, and that there are objective criteria. And I gave an example of paying overtime, which at a certain stage does not lead to this kind of unfairness. , or differentiated treatment, which varies from province to province,” he concluded.
The Diploma of Health was published on January 30, 2019, with the aim of becoming a mandatory competence of municipalities in January 1, 2021, but the operation was not very popular.
In mid-August 2020, the minister who was overseeing municipalities, Alexandra Letau, postponed the deadline for municipalities to finally receive this competence – as well as the competences in the field of Education and social work – On April 1, 2022 – and he justified this with “The need to ensure the complete success of a very complex process“.
Negotiations in this area, municipality after municipality, have been slow and as this deadline approaches, more and more mayors are requesting new postponements.
Recently, the mayors of Lisbon and Porto sent a letter to Prime Minister Antonio Costa, demanding that the deadline be pushed back to the end of this year, as happened with the Ação Social.
The mayor complains first of all Little money allocated to the complexity involved in performing these skills.
Moreira and Muedas call for postponement of skills transfer in education and health
In the final phase of the outgoing government (the new government took office on Wednesday), Alexandra Letao and Health Minister Marta Temido have developed efforts with the ANMP to “push the transfer of competencies” in the field.
At the end of the meeting, on March 10, while Alexandra Litau Refused to postpone the operation againMarta Temido, who is still in office, admitted it Most likely, the transfer of competencies will not be completed until next Thursday.
“If you ask me if we will be able to successfully complete this transfer in the timeframe we would like, probably not, but we are deeply committed to and believe in this process, as are all the actors involved,” he said.
According to the More Transparency portal, with the latest official data from the government, only 58 municipalities have assumed jurisdictions at this level, out of a total of 201 possible.
Within the scope of the decentralization of health, it is planned to transfer about 1,800 workers, 600 pieces of equipment and 900 buildings to the municipalities.
This decentralization process covers only the mainland.
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