The Government says it wishes to reassure patients of the GHA that continuity of care will not be affected in any way by the small number of doctors that have left recently.
A statement continued: “All their appointments and responsibilities are covered by locums until the vacancy can be filled with a permanent post. No patients will lose their appointments – they will simply be seen by another, equally qualified, skilled and capable doctor.
“It is completely misleading for the GSD to attribute these doctors moving on to low staff morale. Of the six doctors who have left the GHA since August 2016:
− One retired
− One came to the end of their contract
− One was over retirement age
− Three have resigned for personal reasons
“The GSD’s constant, negative and unconstructive denigration of the GHA undermines the hard work of the clinical staff to maintain high standards of staff and patient welfare across one of Gibraltar’s largest organisations. Simultaneously, as an employer, the Government considers it wholly inappropriate for the GSD to politicise the personal decisions of doctors to move on after years of dedicated and quality service to the community. It is completely unfair for doctors to unwillingly and unknowingly become the subject of public interrogation in this manner.”
Minister for Health, Care and Justice, Neil F Costa, said: “It is increasingly evident that the GSD are using the GHA and their unfounded criticism of its clinical management as their new preferred means of attacking the Government. This level of political hypocrisy is unacceptable. Neither patients, doctors nor administrative staff deserve it. The GSD are trying to imply a serious, systematic problem within the GHA that does not exist. Patients can be reassured that all necessary measures are being taken to ensure continuity of care, and that all appointments will be covered by a suitable doctor.”