Kato Pyrgos residents protest over lack of doctor
By Gina Agapiou
Residents of Kato Pyrgos Tyllirias protested on Tuesday morning against the lack of staff in the local medical centre.
At around 7.30am a number of frustrated patients including students and pensioners gathered outside the Kato Pyrgos centre with signs reading ‘Health is the right of all’.
According to community leader Nicos Kleanthous, the clinic sometimes has no doctor.
Protesters demanded the employment of two permanent doctors and one pharmacist.
“The region does not have a private pharmacy and the pharmacist that works at the hospital resigned and only assists patients once or twice a week,” said Kleanthous. “We are asking for something obvious, our health.”
Kleanthous said residents were fed up and protesting was the only way they knew how to be heard.
The community leader also requested the employment of a cardiologist at the local clinic two to three times per month.
“Unfortunately, we are located far away from other communities, and it is difficult to visit other hospitals and pharmacies. We need the state to treat us equally,” he added.
Last week the doctor from Salamiou health centre was sent to replace one of the doctors missing from the Kato Pyrgos community.
As a result of the move and the protest, residents of Salamiou organising their own spontaneous protest later in the day, saying their two permanent doctors were being used to supplement 14 other communities.
“We are not second-class citizens,” said community leader Costakis Aygousti and demanded the appointment of a permanent doctor and a pharmacist at the Ayias Varvaras Salamiou clinic.
Salamiou hospital had no doctor or pharmacist on Tuesday.
“We gave a lot of time to the authorities and we received no response to our requests,” Avgousti added.