loss 19-day strike by residents of hospitals and health centers in Buenos Aires like never before Human resource crisis in the health system repeating in the country, With employees who have not fully recovered from the physical and emotional consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, the demand for caregiving is increasing manifold along with salaries which is prompting professionals to resign from their positions. malaise spreads, though more quietly than residents Plant and duty doctor.
In internal WhatsApp groups, Juan B. Support has grown in recent days for a rally with candles and lanterns on Justo and Santa Fe Avenue at 8:00 p.m. tonight. “I Turned On a Light for Public Health”, read at the convocation of an assembly of residents and attendees of the City of Buenos Aires, demanding improvements in wages and working conditions. The meeting of plant health workers also participated.
“We came to this because it is an activity that is not used to claim. Now, we have reached a point where it becomes impossible overload and non response, The youngest people are leading the charge, who have a distinct energy and an attitude that previous generations didn’t or couldn’t have because we romanticized working conditions, which in other sectors would have been intolerable,” said Jimena Roca, on-call doctor at a Buenos Aires hospital and specialist in burn surgery.
for about three weeks of unemployment in these An out-of-pocket salary close to $250,000 (with a floor of $200,000), as the most urgent claim, the lack of human resources made itself felt. in hospitals, This human resource crunch on the hospitalization floor resulted in decreased patient discharges and admissions, slowed daily follow-up of patients, suspended surgeries and even increased resignations from staff positions. been attended to, especially a specialist such as a cardiologist or neonatologist involved in the most sensitive areas, so that he can know Country In recent days, in conversation with staff handling these tasks reserved for residents and concurrent patients in both pediatric and acute care centers.
“In this situation, it is not possible to continue practicing the profession,” continued Roca, who was on the front line of care during the pandemic. “If the demands are one-sided, then it becomes a profession for masochists – he maintained -: practicing with low pay that is closer to the basic basket, with patient care demands that are increasing in volume and complexity. With an overload of administrative tasks and fewer resources within reach. This is totally ungrateful, we expose ourselves to error, we are legally helpless, there is no response from those who should have taken responsibility, And this crisis is going through the entire medical community and health professionals. Therefore, the claim has to be accepted by the entire population, otherwise we will not be heard. Without health there is no project, perspective or person, No matter how much business and dedication we put into our profession, it has become an unequal battle: we are asking for strength from the citizen who was, is and will be treated in hospitals.
And he added a diagnosis that colleagues at other centers also worded differently: “Health in Argentina is in intensive care and there is no one to attend to.”
In shifts, with the complexity of patients, usually due to lack of appointments to control problems such as diabetes or high blood pressure, which also complicate other conditions, Increased demand for psychiatric morbidity, alcohol and drug use, and suicide attempts, As they coincided, the conflict with the young doctors has done nothing more than highlight structural problems in the health system that have been in place for years. And he affirmed that this scenario extends across the country and across public and private sectors alike, who share the same professionals.
At the Ricardo Gutierrez Children’s Hospital, the residents’ strike also complicated work because they are in charge of the hospitalized units. “This was partially covered with doctors on duty who are on outdoor duty at this time with a huge demand and a small number of replacements could be agreed upon. Let us all cooperate. Working in hospitalized areas , with complex patients, with comorbidities, is very difficult. We have too few doctors on staff and heads of units that are working, in the same way doctors on call are insufficient to cover not only external demand, but All also lead to hospitalization”, said María Fernanda Rivas, head of the admissions unit at that referral pediatric center.
He commented that replacements had been requested, but these replacements were not obtained due to low paying offers. He said, ‘This is a very delicate situation. We hope that the government of Buenos Aires will be able to settle a reality: residents cannot live below the poverty line. It’s shameful.” Employees of Gutierrez filed an appeal with 29 reports from different working days and a letter was sent to the health authorities. Rivas, president of the Gutierrez branch of the Association of Municipal Physicians (AMM), said, The struggles are many.”
In the face of all this, the sector’s trade unions do not want to lose representation with wages, bonuses and working conditions that do not achieve the same level of improvement as other activities. “In the city, on Tuesday of last week, the union that brought together the health workers joined the columns along the Diagonal Norte from Avenida 9 de Julio to demand of the residents. They did this with a 24-hour strike and mobilization at the headquarters of the Buenos Aires Ministry of Health in front of the Plaza de Mayo. A staff doctor with 15 years of seniority who works as a specialist on call on weekends doesn’t manage to add up to $200,000 at the end of the month, If you go private, the best coverage pays less than $2,000 per visit ($1,200-1,500 on average).
Today, after noon, WhatsApp groups were active with versions of an agreement that the AMM would have reached with the Buenos Aires government to increase the wage increase from 86 to 99%. Before the consultation, those in the team of Minister Fernán Quiros did not know the details or an impending announcement to unlock the conflict with the residents and they returned to their tasks. At noon, according to a message that began to circulate among employees of hospitals and health centers, the increase “to the salary and stipend of staff doctors and residents, for all categories”, including the replacement of guards, will be discussed tomorrow Will. The Central Council of the Guild for a vote. The gathering of residents and attendees were also waiting to know the details.
In a statement broadcast after 5:00 p.m., a detail of that agreement with the Buenos Aires government was anticipated: a review next January of that 99% increase “if the IPCBA’s annual inflation [Índice de Precios al Consumidor de la Ciudad] exceeds that index”, an increase of 270% for the career entry supplement and 135% for the critical function (and guard) supplement and a pocket salary of $210,000 for entering the pros and $100,000 for first-class residents 200,000 with progress according to “Year of Residence, Head and Instructor”. In these chats with colleagues, the message encouraged discomfiture: the agreed percentage was less than actual inflation for pay that was already 30% behind the index they had been relying on.