Free health care in Malta

Till some months or years ago we had free health-care centres in nearly every town and village of the Maltese and Gozitan islands.

“Free”. But they’re not because every working citizen contributes between 10% and 15% of their wages to sustain this service, whether they use it or not. So all the Maltese Citizens are paying for this service, it’s not something that’s just given for free or as a charity for those who can’t afford to pay.

Those who can pay are lucky, because to avoid the long queues of our national health service they just fork out more money out of their own pockets and do whatever they need to do in a private hospital. But these people still paid 10-15% of their income to sustain this national health service, which they will never use!

Other people are even less lucky. They paid National Insurance for 50 years, that’s 10% of their salary for 50 years. 3 years after retirement they get diagnosed that they need a hip-bone replacement operation. 9 years later, they’re still in the queue for the operation. Now, 9 years later they’re 75 years old. I’m not sure how much a hip replacement op might cost, but I wonder. What if  this lady had saved her money instead of giving it in National Insurance? 10% – 15%  of her wage for over 50 years. Heck she’d probably have enough to pay for not only her own hip but that of a couple of friends as well!

Now let’s go back to the first sentence of this rant of mine.

There’s no longer a free health-care centre in every town and village of the Maltese and Gozitan islands as there was before.

No. Now we’ve only got 3 health care centres which are open 24/7. Mosta, Floriana and Paola. To cater for 450,000 people of Malta.

No health-care for Gozo!

There are some 40,000 other citizens living on the island of Gozo. They don’t have a health centre at all now. What the hell? Are Gozitans second class citizens now? Or has helicopter service been extended so that Gozitans get free transport to one of the 3 functioning health centres in Malta?

Constant information is being propagated that unless one’s situation is very serious and life threatening, one should not go to the general hospitals (of which there is only one in Malta and one in Gozo).

Nice. So some guy would fall from a height and break some bones.
Since it’s not life-threatening he won’t be attended to at hospital. He’d have to get someone to get him to Mosta, Floriana or Paola. (And only God would have to help him if he were in Gozo at the time of the accident.) And then the health centre would obviously refer him to hospital to get further tests done. A couple of days later. And oblivious to the pain suffered.

I think the Government, considering the very sorry state it’s in, should declare an “opt-in, opt-out” NI system.
i.e. if you pay N.I. then you’re entitled to free health-care and pensions, whereas if you don’t then you’re not entitled.

It’s terribly unfair to have everyone forced to pay N.I. in a compulsory manner otherwise they’d be getting penalised for not paying.

Take as an example one pensioner who forked out €3000 for a cataract operation. She was already 70 when she did it, she couldn’t afford waiting for another 10 years as she was told to. She always paid 15% of her income as a self-employed business woman. That results much more than €3000.

What do you think about this?



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2 responses to “Free health care in Malta

  1. Excellent article which illustrate

  2. Excellent article which illustrates what’s really happening in this country.

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