The uproar over the Cabinet’s controversial decision to appoint the head of the Cyprus Medical Association (CyMA) to the board of directors of the Health Insurance Organisation – the state body tasked with overseeing the general health system or Gesy – continued on Friday.
CyMA’s Petros Agathangelou (photo) but also Marinos Soteriou who heads the Private Doctors Union which is not even a member of Gesy and also got appointed to the board were strong opponents of the implementation of the three-year-old scheme.
The number of groups and public figures slamming Thursday’s decision is rising by the minute. In fact, two former health ministers and key players behind the long-awaited implementation of Gesy went as far as to publicly question the motives behind these two appointments.
Former health minister Constantinos Ioannou posted on Twitter: “It is now crystal clear what the intentions of some are in appointing to the board of the HIO a person (Agathangelou) who fought – and still fights – against Gesy for his own reasons – which are respected – and who used to refer to doctors joining Gesy as ‘apostates’.”
Ioannou also wrote that the appointment reeks of a conflict of interest given that the HIO’s board decides matters such as the reimbursement of doctors.
And Giorgos Pamborides, the health minister before Ioannou and architect of the health scheme, wrote on social media: “Protecting Gesy from its enemies was your personal responsibility, President Anastasiades.I used to believe you had the fortitude to resist the agents of the establishment.”
But, he added, Thursday’s move constitutes an unbecoming assault on what has been achieved with much labour.