Over 100,000 people in Cyprus are estimated to suffer from some form of rheumatic disease, Health Minister Constantinos Ioannou said on Friday.
Speaking at a press conference of the Cyprus Antirheumatic Association (CAA), Ioannou noted that “in Europe, rheumatic diseases constitute the most common cause of absence from work, and account for 50 per cent of long-term functional inabilities.”
Ioannou highlighted the need to support efforts by the CAA toward assuring that those who suffer from rheumatic or musculoskeletal disorders retain access to the labour market and to the necessary treatments which allow for a dignified living.
The national health scheme (Gesy), will significantly contribute toward this end, Ioannou added, as “the introduction of GPs will allow for a proper monitoring of patients and for the administering of appropriate treatment in cooperation with specialist doctors.”
“As with all large reforms, we expect some challenges to arise in the early period of the implementation of Gesy, but we are prepared to face them,” Ioannou said.