Qendra shëndetësore e Komunës Frashër në Përmet
In the remote areas of the southern region the health service results to be very problematic, the physicians and nurses miss from the job for several days in succession. Inhabitants complain that even for getting a simple health service they have to travel many kilometers towards the hospitals of the towns.
By Telnis Skuqi
Gjirokastër – Manjola F. from Izvor village, mother of two children wants to see the doctor at the health center of Luftinje commune in Tepelena, but the chief nurse is not in her working place since three days. “To see a doctor at the hospital you need an accompanying letter from the chief nurse, but it is in vain, because she lives in Tirana and gets her salary in Tepelena”, says Manjola. According to her, the health center in Luftinje commune is almost closed, at a time that she receives her health services in Tepelena. Manjola tells that she suffers from a bad cold and she must take the treatment on the proper time. “I go to the town just for an injection, because I do not have time to wait for the nurse to come from the capital city”, says Manjola. She also tells that she has raised this concern to the Public Health Directorate but they have not done anything at all. “I do not prejudice the health institutions politically, but this does not stop me to think differently when I see that the free of charge health has turned into employment offices for the political parties affiliates”, says Manjola adding that this situation is not only in Izvor village but in all the remote rural areas.
The same concern is expressed even from Ilirjan K. from Frasher village, 70 years old, who says that the health center in Frasher commune in Permet is almost closed, whereas the family doctor comes only once in a month. “Frasher is the most remote village in Permet district. Unfortunately, youth has left; there are only living the elderly people. All feel to be abandoned from the health service”, tells Ilirjan. According to him, the inhabitants of this area go to Permet hospital for every health service. I need at least 45 km to have an appointment at the Permet hospital, whereas the doctor is paid without going at his work at all”, expresses Ilirjan. The free of charge health service does not exist for Ilirjan, as there does not exist to him even the physicians of his area. “We have forgotten the face, name and the mobile phone number of the physician of our commune, because he has forgotten us”, stresses Ilirjan, adding that they have informed the Public Health Directorate in Permet about the lack of the physician, but this institution has not reacted.
“We have not left two stones together. I have sent my complaint everywhere and surprisingly enough I was not given any solution from the Public Health Directorate. It is worthier their silence rather that the lives of Frasher people”, underlines Ilirjan. Adding that even for a box of paracetamol one must travel to the town. “The salt is cheap, but it becomes expensive on its way to us”, continuous Ilirjan. After that, Ilirjan tells that in his village are living at least 20 families, all elderly people. “Thanks to the children we ensure the food and the most indispensable medicine for our existence. It is now 25 years that is has turned out into a habit that who comes in this remote village informs one day before its inhabitants. They bring from the town our orders”, says Ilirjan.
In Gjirokastra district the situation is rather better compared to Permet and Tepelena, and this due to the concentration of the regional health institutions. Almost all the health centers in the communes are functional, but it is not excluded the possibility of abuse in some remote areas. Flamur Golemi, the director of the Gjirokastra Public Health Directorate says that after the complaints of the public at least nine employees of the health services have been dismissed as they have resulted to have performed heavy administrative violations. “Only during March of this year two employees have been dismissed due to complain coming from the citizens”, says Golemi. According to him, the decision for the appointment and dismissal from the job of the health employees and nurses of the health centers until November 2014 was taken by the board of the health centers. “All decisions have been unanimous, something that verifies that the complaints of the citizens were right”, underlines Golemi, who also stresses that in the first quarter of this year the number of the complaints has reached to eleven.
“All the complaints were handed in a written form to the Regional Directorate of the Public Health. These complaints were taken into consideration by undertaking the necessary verifications, something that has brought the dismissal from the duty of the medical staff who had violated the citizens’ rights”, admits Golemi. Furthermore, the senior representative of the public service in Gjirokastra region admits that the total number of the staff at the health centers is 28 physicians and 121 nurses.
Differently from the declaration of the director of the Public Health of Gjirokastra region, the physician E.Kola judges that his dismissal was totally wrong and a political decision. “To dismiss a physician from his job in a health center because there was complained the “x” person and without proving the complaint you are dismissed I judge it as being hasty and totally a political decision”, says the physician Kola. According to him, the Public Health Directorate cannot overtake its own legal competences, as it cannot duplicate the prosecution’s office and the courts. “Since 6 months the health center in Cepo commune is without a physician, because this is something enabled by the Public health”, says Kola, adding that the Administrative Court of the First Instance Court has given him the right to benefit 24 months salary as a compensation, but this decision was opposed by the Public Health Directorate, which will depend on the final decision that will be taken by the Administrative Appellate Court.
The Public Health Directorate in Tepelana and Permet districts have not accepted to officially respond related to the non-functioning of the health centers in their respective areas, despite the two official letters that were sent to them by the Association of Journalists for Justice.
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