| 23 October 2021, Saturday |

Abyad: Four main challenges face health sector

Minister of Health Dr. Firas Abyad tweeted:
The health sector currently faces 4 main challenges:
a. Shortages in meds and supplies
b. The high cost of hospitalization
c. Migration of healthcare workers
d. Covid
These challenges are the result of chronic unsound policies, exacerbated by the financial crisis. What to do:
Currently, subsidization is still needed, but the allocated funds are not sufficient, especially with observed hoarding and smuggling. On the long term, the drug bill must be reduced by supporting the local industry, generics, reducing monopoly, and rational drug utilization.
Raising tariffs as soon as possible is necessary. Currently, the patient is paying the price. This is unacceptable and unsustainable. On the long run, more emphasis must be placed on preventive medicine, and primary care. This will eventually lead to a lower hospital bill.
Daily hardships, and feeling helpless in front of patients due to the lack of meds and supplies, weigh heavily on medical and nursing staff, forcing them to leave. Raising tariffs will enable hospitals to raise health workers’ salaries, and help procure the needed supplies.
The vaccine drive must be intensified to reach a higher immunity level. This is essential but not sufficient. In addition, we must not be complacent with following safety rules, such as wearing a mask. All sectors must cooperate with @mophleb to achieve these two objectives.
Our problems in 🇱🇧 are many and intertwined. Their solutions are not easy, but they are not impossible. First, the bleeding must be stopped. Then, the recovery starts. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and we are not alone. More details to come soon.