The Andalusian Health Service (SAS) was created between January and September of this year with more than 1.8 million hours of continuing care consultations, surgeries, and diagnostic tests in the afternoon, which means that in December 2023, almost 2.5 million hours will be reached. This represents 8.69% more than in 2022 and 40% more compared to 2018. In addition, until this year the same time has been done like everything in 2018.
To do this 1.8 million hours, the Andalusian Health Service has allocated a total of 101 million euros, which means 40% more than in 2018 at the end of the year when 77 million euros were dedicated to this purpose.
This increase in health care activity translates into 15% more surgical indications, 17% more outpatient consultations, and 2% more diagnostic tests relative to 2018. “This increase is a good sign that The system works with its resources and that an answer is given to the health needs of Andalusians,” SAS sources indicated.
These data show the commitment to self-concerts and continuity of care (complementary activity in the afternoon), which is already done in all Andalusian public hospitals. In addition, the additional day (medical guards) has experienced an economic increase of 56.24% since 2018, from an additional 16.82 euros per hour five years ago to 26.28 in 2023.
“We thank our professionals for their commitment and efforts. We rely on them to voluntarily extend their working hours in an appropriate and paid way, and thus improve the care activity in the morning, afternoon, and evening, in addition to the weekend. It is important to increase outpatient surgery and optimize resources so that the activity of the hospital is at one hundred percent of its possibilities,” SAS sources said.
Regarding the latter, the Minister of Health and Consumer Affairs of the Junta de Andalucía, Catalina Garcia advanced the Andalusian Parliament a total of 6,031,431 euros in self-concerts for performing about 9,000 surgical interventions in later procedures, which means a reduction in waiting lists by 17.48% in the coming weeks.
In this regard, he argues that the commitment of the Andalusian Health Service and the Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs to self-concerts and continuity of care breaks any “accusation of privatization” of the Andalusian public health system. Along these lines, he stated that the framework agreements only represent a change in the legal regime and that in any case, it does not mean an increase in the budget allocated for this purpose. He stated that In 2018, the dedicated to concerts reached 4.19% of the budget and in 2023 it remains at 4.03%. “Today there is less agreement than in the previous socialist government,” he added.
Lack of professionals in the National Health System
Accordingly, he remembered that The biggest problem in healthcare at the national level is the lack of professionals which, according to him, has become “endemic. Therefore, he remembers that for five years the Spanish Government has been asked to increase the number of MIR areas with no response given by the autonomous communities. Likewise, requests in Andalusia the flexibility or change of criteria for the accreditation of new teaching units, because in specialties such as Family and Community Medicine, Neurology, or Psychiatry, the maximum possible is offered already.
For its part, the Ministry of Health and Consumer Affairs has activated measures in three lines. On one side, an increase of 33.9% in MIR areas offered from 2018 to 2023, as well as improving the working conditions of health professionals to retain talent. Thus, through the three agreements of the Sectoral Roundtable, the salary increases were increased by an additional 330 million per year, which was achieved by an increase of 14% on average in professional payrolls. The third measure is the expansion of the workforce in all professional categories, which currently rely on 25,000 more professionals than in 2018 which 4,496 are optional.
Thanks to these steps, this year Predictably, about 90% of the doctors who completed the MIR will stay in Andalusia, unlike in 2018, when only 50% stayed. In addition, another fact that shows that Andalusia is attractive today in the field of health is that the number of doctors who decided to go to the autonomous community to perform the MIR increased by 10%. In this way, if in 2018 these doctors represented 18% of the total MIR, now they have reached 28%.
“It is, without doubt, a more determined commitment than before to the Andalusian public health system, with more and better-paid professionals than five years ago and retaining talent, because now our land is attractive for health professionals,” he stressed.