Government Still Only Cynical Regarding Minimum Healthcare Wage

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retvarijegyzetThe arrogant cynicism of the Fidesz state power is truly outrageous. Since they keep preaching family and Christian values, one would think that there are issues where they can be expected, even if minimally, to have sober judgment and take responsible action. But no. There is really only cynicism, superiority arrogance, and blatant disregard for facts under the orange rule.
Fidesz does not even conceal the fact that healthcare is a tertiary area for them, in which, even according to the medical chamber, safe patient care can be guaranteed. That is why our proposal is important and much needed, namely that a minimum healthcare wage be established in the sector that guarantees decent wages for doctors and nurses, and which at the same time can provide a solution for managing emigration, thus guaranteeing the operational security of the healthcare system.
These past days, I addressed a written question to Minister of Human Resources Miklós Kásler pointing out that if the government intended to introduce a “guaranteed sectoral minimum wage” in tourism due to the “constantly critical labour shortages”, it would be a simple government decision to do the same in healthcare. My letter was responded to by the ministry’s Secretary of State Bence Rétvári, but he did not respond at all to the suggestion of a minimum healthcare wage, instead, he wrote of their contempt of previous governments and some lies of deception.
It is pathetically ridiculous in itself that after almost ten years of governance (again: ten years!), all they are capable of doing is pointing back like kindergarten children, but it is beyond belief that they try to hide the facts clear to everyone with Habony’s wording tricks. Secretary of State Rétvári argues that, thanks to Fidesz, “the average gross earnings (including moving wages and benefits) of a nurse with vocational training in the E2 salary range, with 4-6 years of legal status” is now over three hundred thousand forints, but he hides the fact that wages for starting skilled workers are barely double the subsistence minimum, but less than half of the national average gross earnings.
Isn’t this is an attractive career model! No wonder there have been times recently when three doctors and at least two skilled workers left the country every day. A sector-wide minimum wage, a fair minimum salary for doctors, nurses and skilled workers would provide a quick solution to the healthcare crisis, while systemic issues would require Member States to define, support and demand the establishment of a European minimum health service.
I consider the latter one of my priority tasks as a MEP, which is why I have taken up my duties in the relevant committee of the European Parliament. So while the government is still cynical regarding the matter, we are working on a solution. Because for us the Hungarian people come first.

dr. István Ujhelyi
Member of the European Parliament
29 September, 2019