The Malta Independent 30 September 2022, Friday
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‘Family doctors can do more if they are given more tools’

Thursday, 22 September 2022, 11:11 Last update: about 8 days ago

The Malta College of Family Doctors (MCFD) and the Association of Private Family Doctors (APFD) said that as society adapt itself after the Covid-19 pandemic, family doctors are facing unmet needs from patients who were afraid to approach medical services in the past years.

In a statement listing proposals for Budget 2023, the two organisations said that a number of important medical services have not yet reached the previous level of activity after the pandemic.

MCFD and APFD said that political parties recognised, in their respective manifestos for the last general election, how ‘family doctors can do more if they are given more tools.’ A number of proposals were encouraged by both organisations for decision makers to observe in the imminent budget.

The two organisations made the following recommendations:

-          Fully roll out the national electronic patient health records for primary care;

-          Improve communication between primary and secondary care by investing in the digital interfaces needed to put all patient information from different medical sections available online;

-          Make digital services already available to the general population also available for residents in the Homes for the Elderly;

-          Create a route for all family doctors to be able to apply for free (Schedule V) medication on behalf of their patients;

-          Make more investigations available to all family doctors;

-          Increase the expenditure on preventive health services; and

-          Make shortcuts to bureaucratic triangulations. 

MCFD and APFD stated that these proposals can both improve the patient experience of the health service (as the number of stops and days taken off work to access health services would be decreased), whilst also transferring expenses from the fairly more expensive secondary hospital care services to the comparatively less expensive primary care services.


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