[WATCH] 'Not enough Budget funds allocated for rehabilitation centres' - Claudio Grech

Shadow health minister Claudio Grech calls on government to start investing in new rehabilitation centres

Shadow health minister Claudio Grech. Photo: Chris Mangion
Shadow health minister Claudio Grech. Photo: Chris Mangion
Claudio Grech criticises lack of Budget plans for rehab. Video: Chris Mangion

The €500,000 that have been allocated to rehabilitation centres in the budget for next year is nowhere near enough to fit their demands, shadow health minister Claudio Grech said.

“Investment in rehabilitation centres should not be an after-thought but part of a long-term strategy,” Grech told a press conference outside the Karin Grech Rehabilitation Hospital, Malta’s only rehabilitation centre.

When asked how much money he thinks should have been allocated to rehabilitation centres instead, Grech chose not to give a direct figure but said that the annual operating budget of the Karin Grech Hospital is close to €12.5 million.

“There are around 250 beds in the Karin Grech Hospital but around half of them are occupied by long-term patients who unfortunately have nowhere else to stay,” Grech said. “Moreover, the hospital is in serious need of refurbishment and new equipment and technology that would render rehabilitation more efficient.”

He also called on the government to invest in new rehabilitation centres.

“The number of elderly people as a percentage of Malta's population is constantly increasing and the solution lies in investing in health centres outside Mater Dei Hospital,” Grech said. “When Labour got elected to government, they found two ready-made plans, one to convert St. Philip’s Hospital into a rehabilitation centre and another to build a new rehabilitation centre next to Mater Dei.” 

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