The harsh statement from interventional cardiologists: No more stents can be placed

The harsh statement from interventional cardiologists: No more stents can be placed
The harsh statement from interventional cardiologists: No more stents can be placed

The Argentine College of Interventional Cardioangiologists warned of a health crisis and said that the increase in medical supplies and costs puts cardiovascular surgeries at risk.

Today 19:41

He Argentine College of Interventional Cardioangiologists (CACI) issued a harsh statement in which it warned about the crisis that crosses the sector and claimed solutions to medium term to maintain the level of care for vital procedures such as the placement of stents and the realization of angioplasties which, in many cases, could no longer be carried out.

In a release in which the doctors of that specialty detailed the situation, they indicated that it is due to the combination of exponential increase in cost of medical equipment and supplies, already systematic reduction of professional fees, which has already begun to have an impact on the delay and rescheduling of interventions and compromised the cardiovascular health of patients.

To underline the urgency of a comprehensive solution, Dr. Ruben Kervorkiana leading interventional cardiologist, indicated that heart and vascular conditions “They are the main cause of death in Argentina. According to the latest Vital Statistics report from the Directorate of Health Statistics and Information (DEIS) of the Ministry of Health of the Nation, in 2022 they were registered in our country 110,062 deaths by diseases of the circulatory system, including hypertensive, ischemic heart disease, heart failure, cerebrovascular diseases, atherosclerosis and other diseases of the heart and circulatory system.

The College brings together highly specialized professionals who depend for their activity on medicines, supplies, and high-tech equipment increasingly inaccessible due to their pricesthey said, which is forcing some doctors to emigrate in search of better working conditions.

The panorama, they highlighted, worsens due to the late payments to doctors, the insufficiency of financing for the renewal of equipment by health institutions, and the bureaucratic obstacles of social and prepaid works. The consequences could be a shortage of interventional cardiologists and the possible closure of highly complex centers, they considered.

He Argentine College of Interventional Cardioangiologists warned that “In the medium term its activity may disappear and stents could no longer be placed or angioplasties performed.” This is due to the “exponential increase in the cost of medical equipment and supplies, the systematic reduction of professional fees.” This situation is already showing “undesirable consequences such as rescheduling of practices and the delay in carrying them out, delaying them for long months,” he assured. If the solution is delayed, in the medium term “all activity will be paralyzedgenerating an incalculable impact on the population health throughout all of Argentina.”

The placement of stents, when performed early “is the most effective treatment to reduce the mortality of myocardial infarction”, in addition, “catheter treatment of stroke carried out in the first hours of the onset of symptoms manages to reduce, not only the mortalitybut also the degree of disability that may remain after it,” he noted.

The supplies necessary for these interventions “are not manufactured in the country,” they recalled, while warning that, to carry them out, “highly trained professionals” are needed. In that sense, they pointed out that the prices of the equipment and inputs “have increased exponentially, between 300% and 500%“, something that “has not been reflected in the healthcare centers where these procedures are performed and that the Social Works and Private Medicine Systems pay for.”

To give an example, the members of the College of Cardioangiologists assured that health centers with catheterization rooms are charging “for the practices less than half that of Latin American colleagues and a quarter or fifth of what is paid in the United States.” Consequently, “these low values ​​paid by financiers affect not only doctors, but also institutions run out of margins to renew equipment and infrastructure”. As a result of this situation, “adjustments” are being made that involve reusing inputs, postponing the updating of equipment and maintaining meager salaries for professionals, which is “thus lowering the quality of services.”

Returning to what was stated regarding the feein the catheterization rooms “the salaries of doctors, in recent years have fallen to values ​​that make it increasingly difficult to stay in the specialty. An interventional cardiologist in Argentina charges for the same work just a fraction of what his colleagues in Chile, Brazil, Bolivia or Paraguay, to name just a few neighboring countries. Furthermore, they said, “doctors charge patients 90, 120 and sometimes 150 days later to assist the patient, without any type of interest or indexation.”

Given this, the College stated in the statement, “doctors with excellent training they are emigrating to countries that receive them with open arms and remuneration commensurate with the quality of their work.” A possible “shortage of doctors and the closure of highly complex centers will undoubtedly have serious consequences on the cardiovascular health of the population,” he added.

According to him, since no action is being taken to solve these problems, “some prepaid medicine and lots social works, “They do not authorize the supply of the basic components to be able to carry out the practices, delaying the necessary studies and threatening the health of the patients, thus deteriorating the quality of care.”

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