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-32,500 in two years. 95 hospitals closed, over 10 thousand doctors missing

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-32,500 in two years.  95 hospitals closed, over 10 thousand doctors missing

The National Health Service (NHS) in Italy is facing a crisis as hospitals struggle with bed cuts and a shortage of doctors. According to the Forum of the 75 Scientific Societies of Italian hospital and university clinicians (Fossc), over 32,500 beds have been cut in just two years, with at least 100,000 beds missing for ordinary hospitalization and 12,000 for intensive care. Additionally, over 11,000 doctors have left public facilities, leading to a decrease in the number of hospitals and resources.

Fossc has launched an appeal to the government for major structural reform and urgent measures to save the universalistic NHS, warning that treatments for everyone are at risk. The lack of doctors is a significant issue, with many young professionals trained at the expense of the state choosing to work abroad for higher salaries.

Italy currently ranks 22nd in the European ranking of the number of beds, with a shortage of both ordinary hospital beds and intensive care beds. This has led to patients with serious conditions waiting in emergency rooms for days due to the lack of available beds.

The situation is so dire that some areas of the country are at risk of health desertification, with different regions facing disparities in healthcare. The proposed law on Differentiated Autonomy has been criticized for potentially widening the gap between the North and South in terms of healthcare, leading to concerns about social cohesion and possible social disintegration.

The NHS in Italy is in urgent need of support and reform to address these challenges and ensure that all citizens have access to quality healthcare.

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