The rulership remained indifferent to all the problems experienced by physicians such as the extreme workload multiplied by the pandemic, forever-continuing shifts, insufficient wages to live on, risky working environments, violence and more… Over 8000 physicians resigned in these 18 months. The number of physicians requesting a certificate of good conduct from the Turkish Medical Association (TTB to work abroad has reached thousands in this year. About 80 physicians immigrate abroad every month. Physicians, who started a new struggle to speak up their demands: “Enough is enough!”
36 HOURS OF WORk
Turkish Medical Association held a press conference yesterday entitled “We protect our personal rights and the public health”.
During the meeting, organized at Istanbul Medical Chamber, it was emphasized that while the government’s health policies and public health were ignored, the rights of health workers were gradually being regressed.
Pointing out that the loss of rights continues during the pandemic, the statement continues: “Unfortunately, health professionals have paid the price of incomplete, wrong, inconsistent practices and unsuccessful policies. They tried to manage the perception, not the pandemic, we paid and continue to pay the price with our lives.”
Drawing attention to the poor working conditions of the physicians, the statement goes: “Long hours of uninterrupted overwork, frequent shifts, heavy workload, exposure to violence have become the usual states of healthcare environments. There are young physicians who cannot leave the hospitals for 36 hours, and there are specialists who do not even know what the concept of working hours is. Moreover, our profession has been turned into one of the most common sectors of insecurity. Oppression, mobbing, discrimination, inequality and nepotism became widespread.
12 THOUSAND Acts of Violence
In the statement, it was emphasized that all these problems, to which the government was indifferent, brought about resignation, physician migration, burnout, illness, suicide and violence against physicians:
“According to unofficial information, about 80 physicians a month prefer to be a migrant doctor abroad instead of practicing medicine in this country.”
45 PERCENT OF THE PHYSICIANS CANNOT LIVE ON FINANCIALLY
At the meeting, the results of the survey conducted by the TTB with 6178 physicians from 81 provinces were also shared. Accordingly, the physicians participating in the survey:
- Monthly income of 45 percent is not enough
- 76 percent do not receive pandemic supplementary payments
- 90 percent think that the performance-based supplementary payment system is unfair
- 84 percent state that they have been exposed to verbal and physical violence by the patient or their relatives before
- 68 percent think that they cannot take care of their patients adequately and appropriately due to the intense working conditions
- 72 percent think that the working environment is not suitable for pandemic conditions
Message for the Ministry of Health
TTB announced that it has started a new struggle process to change this grave picture. They stated:
“We are entering a period where we have a say over our labor. We want to discuss the demands of 175 thousand physicians in our country with the Minister of Health. If the Minister does not respond to our request, we will march together to Ankara where we will voice our demands. If the government insists on this callous attitude, it should know that the DUTY is inevitable.”