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The NGO Doctors of the World hit the streets of Brussels to protest cuts to healthcare spending in Europe. With the continent plagued by an economic crisis, sweeping cuts to social benefits are being made, including healthcare. Our correspondents bring you the details.
Content: Protesters from the humanitarian organization Doctors of the World took to the streets of Brussels on Tuesday to demand better healthcare provision in Europe.
The mission of the Non-Government Organization is to provide healthcare to vulnerable populations around the world, but now they say it's high time to turn their attention to Europe.
[Oliver Bernard, President of Doctors of the World]:
“There is a drop in healthcare provision throughout Europe, especially to the most vulnerable and financially challenged people.”
As part of recent budget cuts, European governments are withholding some healthcare benefits. Among those most affected are recent immigrants.
Dorothy Amoabeng came to Belgium from Ghana 3 years ago. One of her three children has sickle-cell anemia, which is very costly to cure. She currently has no health insurance.
[Dorothy Amoabeng, immigrant from Ghana]:
“It is very difficult to have healthcare in Europe. You don't have the right documents here. Everywhere you go they turn you down.”
The organization points to some worrying healthcare statistics in Europe. According to research data collected by Doctors of the World at some of their centers in Europe, 46% of the people who had been advised urgent treatment, did not receive it.
And 79% of pregnant women had not received any prenatal care.
The protest has attracted the attention of European politicians, who say they share these concerns...