The measure will be applied above all in the Guadalentín, Altiplano and Northwest, which suffer the greatest deficit of doctors
The Murcian Health Service (SMS) plans to offer incentives, although not economic, to try to fill 260 places that are difficult to cover in five health areas. The measure, which will be applied mainly in Lorca (156 places), Northwest (43) and Altiplano (36), will be presented on Tuesday to the representatives of the unions in the Sectorial Table. The SMS seeks to alleviate the consequences of the serious shortage of doctors that peripheral hospitals suffer in specialties such as Anesthesia, Dermatology, Rehabilitation or Urology. The problem also fully affects Primary Care. In total, there will be places declared difficult to cover in 42 specialties.
This declaration of difficult coverage, for a period of two years that can be extended, implies that for the professionals who occupy them, the time worked in that service will compute with an additional 50% for both permanent and temporary personnel, as explained on Monday by the Ministry of Health. in a press release. In addition, these doctors will have an additional 25% to access a section of the professional career, so they will not have to wait six years, but four, to be able to climb to that corresponding section. “They will also have flexible hours to reconcile work, personal and family life”, as well as “preference in the training offered related to their professional activity”. Likewise, “the centers in which these positions are established will have priority in pilot and research projects aimed at improving working conditions and care provision.”
At the moment there are no economic incentives planned, although the Minister of Health, Juan José Pedreño, announced that his department would have two million euros in the 2022 budgets to sign professionals willing to occupy these positions in Primary and peripheral hospitals.
Family Medicine in Cartagena
By health areas, in Cartagena the declaration of 21 places of difficult coverage in Family and Community Medicine is planned, of which 12 correspond to Primary Care of Mazarrón and 9 to the Port of Mazarrón.
In area III (Lorca), there are a total of 156 places in the specialties of Anesthesiology and Resuscitation; Dermatology; Nephrology; Pediatrics; Digestive system; Pathological anatomy; Ophthalmology; Clinical psychology; Psychiatry; Hospital pharmacy; Pneumology; Preventive medicine and public health; General surgery and digestive system; Traumatology; Cardiology; Radiodiagnosis; Internal Medicine and Family Medicine.
In area IV (Northwest) 43 places will be included in the specialties of Radiodiagnosis; Neurology; Anesthesiology and resuscitation; Rehabilitation; Dermatology; Pathological anatomy; Microbiology; Pneumology; Preventive medicine; Ophthalmology; Traumatology and Urology.
For health area V (Altiplano) a total of 36 places are proposed in the specialties of Pulmonology; Rehabilitation; clinical analysis; Dermatology; Radiodiagnosis; General surgery and digestive system; Traumatology and orthopedic surgery and Obstetrics and gynecology. Finally, for area IX (Vega Alta del Segura) four places will be qualified (two in Neurology, one in Paediatrics and one in Psychiatry).
The declaration of vacancies that are difficult to cover requires “the concurrence of a series of care and personnel criteria, such as the gap between the organic staff of a certain option of a health center or health area in relation to the actual active staff”.
Also the demographic circumstances, «their ratios of patients per professional with respect to the regional average» and the requirements of professionals due to the incorporation of new means or technologies, or due to the expansion of the service portfolio.
«Another criterion is the difficulty of coverage by the different supply and selection systems, both for permanent and temporary personnel, due to the existence of vacant places in the last two transfer competitions, lack of applicants registered in the temporary or impossibility of providing the places through service commission or through interim or temporary appointments within a period of three months from their request, ”explained Health.
long waiting lists
The shortage of doctors in areas like Lorca’s translates into long delays for surgery or for a first appointment with a specialist. At the end of last year, the Rafael Méndez had to paralyze the activity of the Pain Unit due to the bloody shortage of anesthesiologists. The latest published data, corresponding to the month of March, raise the average wait to operate in Lorca to 144 days, compared to 92.7 days on average in the Region of Murcia. In Otorhinolaryngology, the delay skyrockets to 211 days (80.9 in the Region). For its part, in external consultations there are waiting times of 407 days on average for a first appointment with the rehabilitation doctor in Lorca, and 260 days in Dermatology.
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