President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has announced a new package to improve the personal rights of health care workers in Turkey.
Erdoğan announced five topics on combating violence against health care workers, establishing a “Professional Responsibility Board” and regulating wages during his speech at an event organized to mark Medicine Day on March 14.
“We are aware of the expectations of our physicians on issues that have not yet been resolved despite the efforts,” he said.
Erdoğan pledged for a regulation aiming to solve the problems related to attacks on health care workers, which will be included in the code of criminal procedure (CMK).
“The crime of deliberate injury will be included in the scope of the CMK. The penalty for preventing the right to benefit from public services will be increased when it comes to health services,” he said.
A “Professional Responsibility Board” will be established for healthcare workers. It will depend on the permission of this board to initiate a criminal investigation due to medical procedures and practices related to examination, diagnosis and treatment performed by all health care professionals within the scope of the practice of their profession, he said.
The “Professional Responsibility Board” will not be held accountable for its decisions, administratively and financially. This board will also decide whether the compensation given by the administration to health personnel working in the public and the state will be revoked.
Erdoğan also promised to improve the wages of health workers and noted these improvements will also reflect on their retirement.
The government aims to make Turkey a popular destination for health tourism in the world, Erdoğan said. The country’s capacity of medicine can meet its domestic needs and can also serve foreign patients, he said.
“Our point is that we want the world to send its patients to our country so that they can be healed here. Turkey’s potential is enough to train the doctor human resources it needs. Our country is also becoming a center of attraction,” he said. Turkey’s health system is developing “as a global health center,” Erdoğan stated.
Turkey has proven that it is in a position to provide the best level of service to its people with its hospitals and physicians during the pandemic period, the president emphasized.
The “strong infrastructure” that the government has built and the reforms in the field of health enabled this capacity, he noted.
“The health system in which we have strengthened our human resources with a personnel number approaching 1.3 million is one of our greatest pride,” Erdoğan said.
Turkey is competing globally thanks to its city hospitals,he said, adding, “We have seen how old and insufficiently fragile developed countries are in terms of health services during the pandemic.”