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Society

Protesting Healthcare Shortages, Rouvikonas Invades Evangelismos Hospital

December 19, 2019

ATHENS – Striking back after being targeted by the New Democracy government for lawlessness, the anarchist group Rouvikonas tore into one of Greece’s best hospitals to protest what it said were faltering health care conditions.

Members stormed into Evangelismos Hospital early in the afternoon of Dec. 19, saying doctors and workers were being forced to work without what they need to care for patients with health budgets cut for nearly a decade as part of austerity measures attached to three international bailouts of 326 billion euros ($362.9 billion) since 2010.

The protesters reached the office of the hospital manager and ripped “deliberate deterioration, criminal lack in materials, medicines and staff, the double shifts and non-existent days off of the employees…who risk their own health and that of their patients,” reported Kathimerini.

The group also mentioned an accident that they said took place a few weeks earlier at the clinic’s basement. Among their past incursions was going into the office of a surgeon they said demanded bribes in return for operating on patients as they threatened him harm if he did it again although the practice is widespread among doctors.

In January, 2017, when the Radical Left SYRIZA was in power, Michalis Giannakos who heads the Panhellenic Federation of Public Hospital Employees, told the British newspaper The Guardian that, “In the name of tough fiscal targets, people who might otherwise survive are dying. Our hospitals have become danger zones,” for patients.

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