The Society of Family Medicine asks that funds be increased in Primary Care

VALENCIA (EFE). Primary Care professionals feel “undervalued”, with an excessive burden, overcrowding of consultations and excessive bureaucratization and, as areas for improvement, they demand an improvement in working conditions, depoliticize the management of this level of health and increase budgets.

This is confirmed by the “Report on the situation of Primary Care in the Valencian Community”, prepared for the Valencian Society of Family and Community Medicine (SoVaMFiC) and which aims to contribute to the renewal of this basic and initial level of health care.

Primary care problems

Regarding the main problems of Primary Care, he affirms that the first has to do with “the low appreciation” that “for years” professionals have had, both by institutions and by citizens, in the case of the latter ” especially as a result of the problems caused in the health field by the current pandemic”.

They also denounce the working conditions of professionals at this level of health, with “precarious contracts, overload of consultations, excessive bureaucratic tasks and lack of means”, as well as “unbalanced staff, an obsolete portfolio of services and lack of leadership ” and budget problems with “constant spending cuts.”

According to the document, the internal demotivation of the group and the difficulties that the citizen finds for their attention has a lot to do with the “terrible conditions” in which they have to carry out their work.

“From the situation of excessive burden on professionals, overcrowding of consultations, waiting for patients, shortage of qualified personnel, or excessive bureaucratization, everything has to do with the scarcity of resources, with the decrease in health spending that is undermining public health,” he says.

As areas for improvement, professionals point to the promotion of actions to recover the illusion of professionals, improve working conditions and staffing, reduce bureaucratization of consultations, depoliticize Primary Care management and increase budgets.

However, regarding user satisfaction with the health system and the care they receive, between 43 and 47% have a perception of “outstanding”, and in the case of Primary Care, the percentage of citizens who consider it ” better or much better than expected” ranges between 88 and 98%, according to data from the Ministry of Health collected by SoVaMFiC.

Feeling of abandonment during the pandemic

The report indicates that, during the pandemic, the unanimous perception is the “feeling of abandonment of some professionals who have not been sufficiently supported, neither at the beginning nor throughout the pandemic, and who have not been consulted to no decision-making. There has been no communication with the toilets, who are the first to perceive what is happening”.

It is also criticized that when data on its evolution have been presented during the pandemic, “there is rarely talk of how Primary Care has responded to this situation” and the indicators “are always infections, deaths, hospitalizations and vaccination.”

“It seems that we forget that Primary Care has been the first line of battle against this pandemic, from the care of symptoms, the tracking of infections, vaccination and, of course, information or awareness work,” they say in the report.

All this, they add, “not to mention that Primary Care staff have also been the first to be exposed to the chain of contagion of the disease.”

To attend “with quality and equity” to covid and non-covid patients, professionals propose the “optimal recovery of delayed patients”, the recovery of patients “disappeared” from the health radar and the management and follow-up of chronic patients; the development of greater proactivity and better prevention of risk factors and the preparation and reinforcement of health systems.

According to the report, with data up to 2018, the population covered by the SIP has decreased in the last 10 years by more than 200,000 people and the rate of local health centers and clinics is 17 per 100,000 inhabitants (compared to 28 of the national average) and spending on Primary Care has decreased.

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