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May 8, 2021

Ioana Mihaila, sworn in as new Minister of Health. Priorities of newly appointed HealthMin: To attract EU funds, increase access to basic medical services, management reform

The newly appointed Minister of Health, Ioana Mihaila, on Wednesday was sworn in at the Cotroceni Palace, in front of President Klaus Iohannis.

“Mrs Minister, you are taking over today a very difficult ministry, the Ministry of Health, during a very difficult time, of a pandemic. I wish you a lot of strength, good luck and to integrate well with your government,” the head of state told the new minister.

The President signed the appointment decree early on Wednesday.


President Iohannis: I expect HealthMin to show responsibility, get involved, act efficiently and constantly communicate


President Klaus Iohannis on Wednesday said that he expected a lot of responsibility and involvement from the new Minister of Health, Ioana Mihaila, but also to explain to the Romanians the current situation regarding the measures taken against the pandemic.

In a press statement at the Cotroceni Palace, the President underscored that the fight against the pandemic is the top priority of the government.

The President listed his expectations from the new Minister of Health, Ioana Mihaila.

“In all this picture of the management of the epidemiological situation, the Ministry of Health has a fundamental role. I expect a lot of responsibility and involvement from the Minister of Health. For more than a year, we have all been working together – authorities and citizens alike – to reduce the negative effects of an unprecedented health crisis. Mistakes are impossible to avoid when working under such pressure, but in order to succeed it is absolutely essential that all this collective effort be based on honest and loyal collaboration, especially at the level of decision-making structures. Teamwork remains the essential condition for our actions to lead to positive results,” said Iohannis.


Priorities of newly appointed HealthMin: To attract EU funds, increase access to basic medical services, management reform


Attracting European funds, increasing access to basic medical services, but also reforming the management of hospitals and health services are three priorities of the newly appointed Minister of Health, Ioana Mihaila.

“In addition to managing the pandemic, my mandate will focus on the following three priorities:

* Attracting and using European funds for health care reforms and investments; under the National Recovery and Resilience Plan, we proposed investments of 2.6 billion euros in hospital infrastructure;

* Increasing access to basic medical services; in this respect, we have provided investments of 330 million euros in pre-hospital care: family doctors’ offices, outpatient clinics, integrated community centres and medical caravans;

* Reform of hospital management and health services.

“We need well-trained people in management positions. Competence in management positions is a necessity, not a fad. For this we will continue the competitions at the county health insurance houses and Adrian Gheorghe, the head of CNAS (National Health Insurance House), will have my full support for this process to be a successful one. Also, we will organise fair competitions for the other management positions in the health system. The MS projects in the next period will be mainly related to these three priorities,” the Minister stated.

According to her, the “poor management and lack of coordination” between different levels of medical care have led to situations such as the transfer of patients from Foisor Hospital.

“We have a historic chance to address at least some of these issues in the coming period,” the fresh Minister said.


I will accelerate the presentation ex officio of all relevant public data and will encourage all elements of reform


The new Minister of Health, Ioana Mihaila, on Wednesday, told in a press conference that she will accelerate the presentation “ex officio of all relevant public data” and will encourage “all elements” of reform.

“This is what for the USR PLUS (Save Romania Union, Freedom, Unity, Solidarity Party) received the vote of the citizens because it presented a government plan that includes reforms and transparency. These things are also part of the government programme and I will do everything so that my mandate is guided by these values. Thus, I will speed up the ex officio presentation of all relevant public data and encourage the reform. It is our duty in front of the citizens and an essential thing for the confidence in the health system, in government in general. We are still in a health crisis, but I am convinced that together we can overcome it, I am convinced that through joint efforts, at the end of this crisis, the health system will result stronger,” said the newly-appointed Minister.


HealthMin on ICU situation: Problem, not only the number of beds, but also but the teams of doctors and nurses properly trained


Minister of Health Ioana Mihaila declared on Thursday, regarding the situation in the intensive care units, that the problem is not only about the number of beds, but rather the teams of doctors and nurses “trained to properly treat patients in the ICU”.

“Just as the previous Minister said, the problem is not just the number of beds, but the teams of doctors and nurses properly trained to treat patients in the ICU. Also, today, along with the head of the nursing staff, we will reevaluate the situation in Bucharest, because I understand that this is where the biggest issue is and we will see if we can resize and rethink the ICUs,” Mihaila said, at the Ministry of Health.

Mihaila also said that training a doctor takes 11 years, and the problems related to the staff training will only be resolved “only in the medium to long term”.

“It takes 11 years to train a doctor with the years of college and 5 years of residency, on average. It is obvious that we cannot fix matters from one month to a another, or even from one year to another. I will encourage universities and we will have a meeting with the universities next week, but the problems with staff training will only be resolved in the medium to long term. (…) For this my colleagues have made every effort in increasing the number of beds, to make room in non-COVID ICUs, they have already modified the structures of the COVID and non-COVID hospitals and things are a little better than they were before,” the Minister said.

Ioana Mihaila said that she will meet with the Secretary General with the Ministry in order to take over the documents from the previous minister, then she will meet with the two secretaries of state in order to take on from their activities, the evaluation of what happened last week, and during the second part of the day there will be a “technical” discussion with the representatives of the European Commission regarding the National Resilience and Recovery Plan, discussion which she “inherited from the previous term”.

Asked whether she had a talk with Prime Minister Florin Citu, the minister replied: “Only a short one, at Cotroceni [Presidential Palace], yesterday”.


Compiled from Agerpres

Photo: www.presidency.ro

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