The Malta Independent 15 November 2018, Thursday

Budget 2017: Cancer treatment services to improve to levels of excellence... by 2021

Tuesday, 18 October 2016, 09:22 Last update: about 3 years ago

Primary Care

For the purposes of expanding primary care, the government will be launching a regional healthcare hub in Paola on the site where Pace Grasso currently sits today. It was also announced that the government will be revamping a number of existing healthcare centres around Malta. A new project will also see the building of a healthcare centre in Kirkop.

Works on a new specialised obstetrics and gynaecological hospital will begin in 2017.

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Pharmacy of your Choice scheme

Under the Pharmacy of your Choice scheme, where patients over the age of 70 or those with mobility issues receive the necessary medicines at their home, the number of localities benefiting from this service will increase in 2017.

Medical equipment that is deemed to be heavy or bulky will be delivered to patients’ homes.

Mental Health

A plan on how to employ a public-private partnership model for the upgrading of Mount Carmel Hospital and the building of a new hospital for acute psychiatric care will be launched next year.

Community services will be strengthened, even in the mental health sector, through collaboration with NGOs – allowing for such services to be spread wider and reach more citizens.

Mater Dei Hospital

In order to provide the best possible medical treatment, a series of investments into the equipment at Mater Dei Hospital has been proposed.

As part of the government’s goal to reduce waiting lists for surgical procedures, such as hip and knee procedures in 2016, a focus will now be placed on other waiting lists, such as that of outpatients.

Works are to start on a car park extension project.

Diabetes

New medicines that fight against diabetes will be added to the medicines registry, while a number of new insulin brands will also be introduced. Also being provided for free will be glucose sticks for all those who suffer from type 1 or type 2 diabetes.

Following a reduction in benefits for persons suffering from diabetes in 2012, 2017 will see a number of benefits introduced for diabetes sufferers. Those patients with the ‘yellow paper’ will benefit from free dental care, subsidies on reading glasses, free access to antibiotics and treatment to mitigate sugar levels.

Cancer

Government plans for the fight against cancer until the year 2021 are to ensure that all cancer treatment services are brought up to levels of excellence.

Investment in the most modern and effective cancer treatment medicines have been proposed. In addition to this, new medicines that fight against cancer will also be placed on the medicines registry with the aim that, over a number of years, all cancer treatment medicines will be free.

Government plans to consult with social partners on the possibility of adding special medical leave on top of the standard ‘sick leave’ for workers who have been diagnosed with cancer or those that are receiving cancer treatment.

From 1 January 2017, smoking inside cars with children present will be prohibited by law.

Addolorata and Mellieћa cemeteries

Under a public-public partnership model, 2017 will see extension works of the Santa Marija Addolorata Cemetery as well as the Sultana tal-Vittorji cemetery in Mellieћa.

 

Sport

Building of more pools

The beginning of 2017 will see works carried out on a new indoor pool at the Cottonera Sports Complex. At the same time, decisions on whether to build more facilities such as this one will be taken following the conclusion of a study on a pool in Wied il-Gћajn.

Other facilities

Extensive works on the Marsa Sports Ground will be carried out in order to modernise the current facilities as well as cater for more disciplines.

Plans to increase the number of facilities at the Marija Assunta school in Ħamrun include the introduction of snooker, handball, table tennis, table football, basketball, darts and a jogging track facilities.

Works on a new sports complex in Santa Venera have been proposed. Plans to modernise the Ta’ Qali pavilion have been announced. The site is currently being used by the Malta Basketball Association. A public call has allowed the government to begin works on a new shooting range in 2017.

Facilities for meetings at the Cottonera Sports Complex will be built, while new diving and football ground facilities will be built in Marsascala.

Next year, proposals will be made so that the Marsa horse-track, as well as other private tracks, will be raised to international standards.

Following a call for an expression of interest for the building of a race track, government will be taking a decision on what will happen next in 2017.

 

Culture

National Foundation for Excellence

A National Foundation for Excellence, led by the Malta Arts Council will be launched in 2017, through which artists and professionals in the culture and creative sectors will be receiving funds.

 

Local theatre projects

Works will be carried out so that 50 local theatres in both Malta and Gozo will be developed for the use of rehearsals and artistic productions.

In this way, private owners of these spaces can, of their own volition, create structural plans for any works they feel could improve the building itself and the artistic potential from upgrades.

The plan is to create an investment scheme with the aim of developing many of these historical buildings for the purposes of artistic activities.

Valletta 2018

In the year leading up to Valletta 2018 European Capital, works will continue to be carried out in order to create more cultural attractions and to regenerate Valletta.

Attractions include the new arts museum (MUZA) at the Auberge d’Italie, the Valletta design cluster at the old slaughter house, the regeneration of Straight Street, the old flea-market, the rehabilitation of the Jesuit Charge, the new museum for contemporary arts, the facade of the Manoel Theatre and the restoration of the facades of Palazzo Ferreria and Palazzo Castellania.

Plans for a number of other regeneration projects for the south of Valletta are also being considered. In 2017, calls for expressions of interest for private-sector proposals on regenerating the Valletta fish market, the buildings close to Barriera Wharf, the Evans Building as well as the exam centre next to Fort St Elmo will be received.

 

Heritage

Following the Malta Environment and Planning Authority (MEPA) demerger into two distinct authorities, the operations and role of the Superintendence of Cultural Heritage has been strengthened and given more importance. In line with this, 2017 will see an increase in the resources allocated to this role so that it can function better.

 

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