The Malta Independent 21 January 2019, Monday

Community clinics set to be maintained by local councils

Monday, 10 December 2018, 16:08 Last update: about 2 months ago

The maintaining of community clinics are set to be the responsibility of the respective local councils, according to the terms of a Memorandum of Understanding signed on Monday.

Signed by the Primary Healthcare Department and the Local Councils Association, the memorandum will see funds from the government be dedicated to refurbishing said clinics and increasing their numbers, whilst local councils will take on the responsibility of maintaining and repairing the centers.

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Speaking at the signing, Minister for Health Chris Fearne said that care in the community must be an absolute priority, and that the majority of care be undertaken in these locations rather than putting a strain on Mater Dei resources.

210,000 patients visit the 54 bereġ (community clinics) around Malta every year.

This understanding systematically moves their refurbishment responsibilities to the local councils, including furniture, medical apparatus, and training of various branches of medical care.

Fearne noted that whilst some existing clinics were in good state, others needed refurbishment and other relocation – specifying that clinics in Marsaxlokk, Kalkara and Pieta were currently undergoing renovations.

Parliamentary Secretary for Local Government and Communities Silvio Parnis stated that this new understanding will help give more power to the local councils.

Fearne was unwilling to take any questions off topic.

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