Analysis

Desperate times for nursing staff as Greek economic crisis deepens

Nurses in Greece are facing pay cuts of 40% and have seen health budgets squeezed so tight that supplies of medication and medical equipment are running low.

All nursing recruitment has been frozen since 2010 leading to unsafe staffing levels.

The dire situation is part of the financial crisis that has hit the whole country. Ten days after Greece’s electorate delivered a landslide no-vote in the referendum on the Eurozone’s terms for remaining in the single currency, the country is on the brink of financial collapse and facing the potential exit of the euro.

This economic meltdown is not only having a devastating effect on the financial markets, but is hugely damaging to public services, including the health sector.

Greek nursing union the Hellenic Nurses’ Association says nurses feel ‘desperate’.

Patient demand

Association general secretary Maria Mitsiou tells Nursing Standard: ‘There is a huge lack of nursing personnel and we have little disposable income because of the pay cuts.’

Ms Mitsiou says public hospitals are struggling to cope with the huge rise

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