Take rumours of healthcare workers strike seriously, speed up healthcare reforms, MMA reminds Putrajaya
SHAH ALAM - Malaysian Medical Associations (MMA) has urged the government to speed-up healthcare reforms and address the longstanding issues of healthcare workers.
Its President Dr Muruga Raj Rajathurai had further expressed his utmost disappointment on the unresolved issues faced by healthcare for years.
He urged Health Ministry, Finance Ministry and Public Service Department (JPA) to take issues faced by the healthcare workers seriously.
"The MMA does not condone any strike however it is understandable that the frustration and burnout among our public healthcare workers have reached its limits. They now want their voices heard.
"The issues they (healthcare workers) are facing are not new, it has been around for years and with little or no change.
"In the last four years, there were three changes in government. With every new Cabinet line-up and administration there was renewed hope but none were able to resolve their issues," he said in a statement.
Dr Muruga also urged Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to step in if there are any roadblocks in implementing these reforms.
"The issues in our healthcare system should not be viewed as a problem for the Health Ministry alone to address.
"Many of the issues especially involving its human resources will require budgeting and planning by MOF and the Public Service Department. "The Prime minister who is also the Finance Minister should step in if there are any roadblocks in implementing these reforms," he said.
Commenting further, Dr Muruga said 'failed policies' are one of the main reason for various of issues in healthcare department.
For example, the commercialisation of medical education which has led to the mushrooming of medical schools and the contract doctor system which was introduced in 2016.
"We hope that the current Prime Minister as a reformist himself, with the power he now has after waiting over 20 years, will right the wrongs of the past.
"We wish to remind the Prime Minister that Malaysians have not forgotten all the promises made (on improving healthcare) during the 15th General Election (GE15) campaigning period by his political coalition and MPs who are now in government.
"The tabling of budget 2023 is just around the corner and the entire healthcare fraternity as well as all Malaysians will be hoping for good news of a budget that truly reflects the government's commitment to healthcare reforms," he reasoned.
MMA also asked for an increase in the health budget to five percent of the nation's Gross Domestic Product (GDP), adding that this should be the minimum allocation for health.