At least 200 thousand protestersaccording to the regional government, took to the streets today a Madrid in defense of health system of the capital, stating that the authorities’ announced reform plans “would destroy it”. “Madrid mobilizes in support of public health care e against the plan of destruction primary care services, ”the unions said. Primary care services in the Madrid area have been under pressure for years due to lack of resources and personneland the situation is made worse by regional mismanagement, unions say.
Waving thousands of white handkerchiefs and with placards and chants directed against the regional president, the popular one Isabel Diaz Ayuso, the demonstrators poured into the main streets of the city center, effectively blocking traffic almost completely. In particular, Ayuso’s most recent decisions regarding the reopening of out-of-hospital first aid centers, which remained closed during the Covid pandemic, and on the distribution of personnel in the local health authorities. Emergency and primary care doctors went on strike. The governor argued, as her main arguments in defense of her, that the protests against her are the result of “Left political activism” and that staffing problems are due to a “shortage of doctors” throughout Spain. Opposition, trade unions and civil society organizations have for years accused the successive center-right governments in the Madrid region of cutting public health and favoring private health.