Private health or public health? Government or opposition? Do youDoctors or nurses? In times of debate and confrontation, both political and social, health professionals in Spain have made it clear that solutions to conflicts go through the public-private cooperation.
At least that is what this year and a half has taught them fighting the Covid-19 pandemic and they have left latent during the ‘II Health Observatory Symposium: The Lessons of Covid-19‘, organized by EL ESPAÑOL and Invertia, which celebrated its first day this Monday, September 13. Appointment opened by the Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, and that it has had representatives from the health sector, the pharmaceutical industry and scientific research.
The day began early in the morning with the inauguration of the president and director of EL ESPAÑOL, Pedro J. Ramírez, who has faced this second be of the Health Observatory with a positive attitude and looking towards a future with a vaccinated population that combines “public health with the economy”.
With 75% of the Spanish population vaccinated, the Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, has wanted to make an appeal to the laggards, although without presenting the vaccine as the solution to return to complete normality. He has assured that the waves of the Covid will arrive and will be a “problem”.
And it is that, both Darias and the scientific speakers of the appointment accept that the “old normal” not coming back anytime soon. Now, we must speak of a normality with a mask “for a while” and a health care system closer to science fiction, with drones and telemedicine -as confirmed by Cofares-, than to a lifelong office. By the way, an office that doctors have denounced is “collapsed” and worse organized than during the first state of alarm.
But in this “new normal”, so much the government slogan, something positive has become a reality for the attention of citizens: cooperation between health workers. The teamwork shown by professionals and managers has been the great success for the speakers.
During this first day of Health Observatory, Participants have spoken of such cooperation between administrations as the “right way” to success. Even the hospitals themselves, which collapsed during that first wave of Covid-19, have confirmed that they have worked together and, thanks to this, have been able to continue treating patients.
Patients of all kinds and to whom the Covid-19 is going to take a significant toll. So much so that, according to experts, mental health problems among Spaniards “will increase by 20% next year.”
But, although cooperation has been the way to follow during all this year and a half, the real challenge that Spanish society now has is to vaccinate the largest possible percentage of the population. Something that happens thanks to the pharmaceutical companies and the country’s health network and that raises new dilemmas such as vaccination in children under 12 years of age.
For the moment, that is a mystery that, based on the opinion of the experts, requires a surplus of vaccines (enough to immunize the vulnerable around the globe) and scientific evidence. “Research has to tell us that vaccinating these children has more benefits than risks,” they have pointed out.
One of the most visible faces of the success of this vaccination campaign is Raquel Yotti, current Secretary General for Research of the Ministry of Science and former director of the Carlos III Health Institute during the start of the vaccination campaign in January.
During his speech at the Observatory’s afternoon session, Yotti wanted to convey the success of the vaccination campaign to “science, technology and Spanish society, of which we should be very proud”.
In the role of the pharmaceutical sector, companies like Bidafarma have distributed twelve million doses “without charging for it.” An example of the “grain of sand” that the sector has put in and that is accompanied by the rest of health professionals who, as they have recalled from the Primary careThey are in a “critical” situation, “very tired and undervalued”. Like the old people’s homes that have denounced their abandonment in the eyes of politicians.
Even so, for all collaboration and cooperation between administrations, two assumptions are required: funds and legal harmony. Something that, as has been presented during this symposium, does not occur in Spain.
The promoters of health technology have denounced that with the 800 million of European funds it is not enough and, health managers have called for a Pandemic law so that “a judge does not decide on a health problem.”
Also the health insurers have had a voice on this first day of the II Symposium of the Health Observatory and have warned of an increase in healthcare costs – a trend that has already been taking place for a few years – which will translate into higher prices for policies.
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