“A humanitarian heresy”: hospitals denounce the vote to abolish State Medical Aid by the Senate

“A humanitarian heresy”: hospitals denounce the vote to abolish State Medical Aid by the Senate

“Dramatic consequences” for an already “strongly weakened” health system. This is what the federation of public hospitals (FHF) expects the day after the adoption by the Senate of the abolition of state medical aid (AME) reserved for undocumented immigrants. For the FHF, this decision is at the same time “a humanitarian, health and financial heresy”. These measures fully covers the health costs of illegal foreigners present in France for at least three months. The Senate transformed it into “emergency medical aid” during the examination of the immigration bill. The government did not oppose this reform, introduced by the right.

“The FHF strongly denounces a suppression which could have dramatic consequences on a health system already in great pain. It calls on the National Assembly, which will examine the text from December 11, to reestablish this essential protective device,” writes the French Hospital Federation (FHF) in a press release.

The FHF first points to “major risks in terms of public health”, while these people are “often more precarious and subject to infectious diseases”. This reform “amounts to weakening our health system, going against the preventive shift desired by all stakeholders”, she judges, deploring that “the lessons of the Covid-19 pandemic seem forgotten”.

“Ethical and deontological dilemma”

“Financially, the abolition of the AME would extremely weaken a public hospital subject to strong budgetary pressures” by depriving it “of the funding associated with the care of sick people, who would continue to be treated” , continues the federation. “The entire scientific, medical and economic community agrees that early treatment of health problems is often less expensive than late treatment”, “which has disastrous effects for people”, she adds.

The end of the AME would finally place caregivers “in a situation of unacceptable ethical and deontological dilemma: refuse necessary care and relief of suffering or treat by degrading the budgetary situation of their establishment”, further deplores the FHF. “I call on the parliamentarians who will examine the text in the National Assembly to follow the voice of reason and restore this system,” argues President Arnaud Robinet.

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