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Statements by the General Secretary of the Central Committee of AKEL Stefanos Stefanou after meeting with the Cyprus Medical Association (PIS)


  • The National Health Scheme (GESY) must be supported to address its problems, shortcomings and abuses
  • The government should extend the period of support provided to public hospitals

1 June 2023, AKEL C.C. Press Office, Nicosia

Today, on the day marking the fourth anniversary of the implementation of the National Health Scheme (GESY), we had the pleasure and honor to meet with the leadership of the Cyprus Medical Association, headed by its President and discussed the GESY.

As AKEL, we have a common understanding with the PIS regarding those issues that must be addressed seriously in order to support the GESY, to confront the problems, shortcomings and abuses that are being noted, so that we can open up a new perspective for the NHS without altering its philosophy and character.

The GESY is a great social achievement. In four years, despite its problems and shortcomings, it has shown its importance for society and our country. As I have said, it is imperative that concrete measures are taken swiftly, with the primary responsibility lying with the government itself, so that we can effectively address these problems and shortcomings.

First of all, there is a need to actively support our public hospitals. Without public hospitals we cannot have a relationship with the specific philosophy and character that we have approved.

As a first step, the government must extend the period of support provided for public hospitals, because public hospitals have constituted the fundamental pillars in combatting the coronavirus and the pandemic over the last two to three years. So we need to provide this period of support to public hospitals, which of course should be used by the state health services (OKYPY) in a rational and concrete way, so that public hospitals can become self-sufficient and be in a position to offer their services in a qualitive way to the GESY and, by extension, to society.

The second and important thing that must be done is capacity planning, where the needs of the health sector in Cyprus must be calculated. We cannot have 28 applications pending for the creation of hospitals at the moment without knowing what the real needs are and even more so without the relevant protocols, criteria and standards in place that must characterise public hospitals and health care services in our country.

The third thing I want to say is that we must at long last define the protocols and criteria, so that we know where we are going and what standards public hospitals and all those who provide health services must meet. We cannot, for example, every now and then have radiology clinics opening and have them in every corner of Cyprus and not have criteria and protocols that also define quality and safety in the health sector.

We also need to create control mechanisms to deal with abuses, but at the same time the system should work properly.

We also need to strengthen services in the direction of introducing innovative medicines, because Cypriot citizens and patients, deserve the best quality of treatment.

There are many other measures that need to be promoted, which are not of the moment. AKEL will come back to these issues in a very specific way. We shall also have a meeting with the Minister of Health, because we believe that we, who have backed the GESY, can submit those proposals and solutions that the government must adopt in order to give a perspective to this great social achievement called GESY.

I would like to thank the President of PIS, my friend Petros Agathangelou, for this very constructive and important meeting we had today. I am sure that the dialogue and contact with PIS, which is an important pillar in our country’s medical and health structure, will continue.



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