The Forum of Primary Care Physicians has published a statement in which it analyzes the “dramatic situation” that Primary Care is going through, which is crumbling, and indicate that the lack of family doctors and pediatricians threatens their survival, in the face of «passivity» of the Administrations, which announce «useless Improvement Plans».
The lack of investment, the growing saturation of consultations and the deterioration of working conditions are generalized in the first level of care throughout the national territory, as explained in the statement, in which, in addition, they maintain that family doctors and pediatricians flee from PC to work in hospitals and in other countries where they are better valued, where “their right to reconcile their work and family life is respected, and where they do not feel exploited.”
Lthe places remain vacant (for example, in the Community of Madrid) or are replaced by other groups (as is the case in the Community of Navarra) given “the passivity of the Managers, who have thrown in the towel and seem to have accepted that they have to dedicate themselves to managing misery,” the statement continues.
Investments in AP “are conspicuous by their absence” and “totally insufficient” Improvement Plans are drawn up, such as the one recently presented for the Community of Madrid, or “activity is increased in the afternoon shift” as in Galicia, or the telephone consultation is eliminated, as in the Balearic Islands, or protocols are drawn up of “back to normality” in Andalusia, which generate impossible schedules for professionals, Decisions that are rejected by the AP Physicians Forum, not only because of the problem it generates for professionals and the health system, but also because of the impact it has on the health of citizens, as indicated.
In addition, from the statement, the AP Physicians Forum explains that the population has not been properly informed of the “reality of immense work” It did, and continues to do, in the diagnosis, monitoring and treatment of Covid patients in health centers.
On the other hand, they point out that, despite the fact that all the experts consulted by the parliamentary commissions for the analysis of the pandemic they insisted on the need for investments and reinforcement of the PA as the basis of the healthcare system, European funds will be used for hospital technology. “The robust Primary Care that supported the National Health Service is no longer more than a rickety structure that is crumbling, unable to excite young doctors.”
Despite the health results it offers to the community and the demonstrated return on investments, the PA «deteriorates by leaps and bounds and soon the population not have enough family doctors and pediatricians in health centers to guarantee quality care«. The societies and scientific entities that make up the PA Forum denounce this abandonment of the PA, demand from the responsible Administrations the necessary investment in PA and the improvement of working conditions for avoid the drain of essential medical talent in order to maintain the first level of care.
The improvement measures have been proposed by this Forum in its Decalogue and in specific plans of the Organizations that comprise it. “The only thing missing is that those responsible really believe in the importance of the PA for the health of citizens and apply them.”
About the Forum of Primary Care Physicians
The entities and societies that are part of the Forum of Primary Care Physicians are: the Spanish Association of Primary Care Pediatrics (AEPap); the State Council of Medical Students (CEEM); the State Confederation of Medical Unions (CESM); the Spanish Collegiate Medical Organization (OMC); the Spanish Society of Primary Care Physicians (SEMERGEN); the Spanish Society of Family and Community Medicine (semFYC); the Spanish Society of General and Family Physicians (SEMG); and the Spanish Society of Out-of-hospital Pediatrics and Primary Care (SEPEAp).