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Tuesday, August 21, 2007 


In the space of one interview:

"I don't think sophisticated weaponry will be of use in such a battle which really involves street fighting."

"Politicians shouldn't talk about military matters."

Ahmad Fatfat, Minister of Ping Pong.

What is the minister of "youth and sports" doing commenting on this or anything else for that matter? Incidentally, what does a minister for youth and sports do exactly?

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The State Department did not say why Seif needed treatment. Human rights group Amnesty International wrote in 2005, when he was still in prison, that he needed heart surgery.

"We call on the Syrian government to allow former member of parliament and prisoner of conscience Riad Seif to travel outside the country to receive urgent medical treatment," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said in a statement.

Syria should lift price controle on fees of medical treatment so more doctors can open clinics in Syria and people will not need to go outside the country for treatment.

The US does not care why Seif needs treatment! And - forgive me for putting words into his mouth - but I am sure Seif does not appreciate their new-found concern.

Anyway, leaving aside that issue, it's a difficult dilemma. Let the free market rule, and let doctors charge as much as they want (the market price for a doctor's consultation would certainly be above the current limit of 500 S.P. / $10). Or, control the price, make medicine an unattractive career, but allow everyone access.

Have a look at the US and the UK - they've both chosen opposite routes, and I know which country I'd like to be treated in. (The UK, in case you're guessing!).

Syria's healthcare system is one of the few fields where Syria scored higher than most Arab countries in a recent quality of life survey.

I posted details about the survey a few months ago...have a search through the site if you're feeling keen.

I agree with Sasa, privatisation is NOT the answer and I don't care how much people criticise the NHS in the UK. They do a damn fine job and healthcare is a right, not a privilege in my humble opinion. That be my two pennies worth.

Everyone should be able to get health care and when the goverment controle the prices then the government is responsible for the shortage of health care , you might think that leaving the prices to the market will increase the price of a cosultaion , i beg to differ as with more people going into medicine the prices will go down to compete , Having a free market will make easier for the goverment to provide better care for the real poor that can not afford the free market prices while the rich that are going now to Lebanon , The US and the EU for care will pay the free market price , one example which i faced was that my aunt's husband had to go to Lebanon to get Radiation therapy because there is one Radiation center in Damascus while Lebanon has i beleive 3 centers.Having a free market health care in Syria will intice the many Syrian doctors abroad to come back and be the place in the Arab world to go for health care .

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  • Written by sasa
  • From Damascus, Syria
  • From Damascus to London via Beirut. Based in and out of the central Damascene hamlet of Saroujah. News and feelings from the streets every day. I'm talking rubbish? Leave a comment. Welcome to the information democracy. See below for info about this site.
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