Health ministry wants to take SMURD emergency service from the Interior Ministry
The Minister of Health, Alexandru Rafila, announced on Thursday that the SMURD emergency service, organized by Raed Arafat at the level of the Department for Emergency Situations, must pass from the Ministry of Interior’s authority to the Ministry of Health’s, and this “must be a health policy of the Romanian state ”.
Rafila emphasized that the Ministry of Health is the one responsible for the medical activity, “both in front of the health professionals and in front of the public opinion”.
“SMURD is a DSU structure that has done its job very well. I will always thank them publicly for what they do, but the integration of the emergency services with the other pre-hospital emergency services they offer or UPUs or emergency departments with the other activities of the health system is absolutely necessary. They do not work separately. They must function in an integrated way, and this must be a health policy of the Romanian state that must not take into account the people who in one way or another occupy a position of public dignity in these fields, but must take into account the need people in Romania to benefit from health services. I wouldn’t want it to be interpreted. I have publicly acknowledged all the merits of Mr. Arafat who did an excellent job in organizing the emergency medical services, but they must be integrated at the level of the Ministry of Health and I think this is clear to everyone,” said the Minister of Health on Thursday.
However, the head of DSU and ‘father’ of SMURD, Secretary of State Raed Arafat, does not agree with the statement of Minister Alexandru Rafila according to which SMURD should be subordinated to the Ministry of Health. According to him, such a change would only “weaken the system and ruin what has been built.”
“The integration of SMURD into the MS or the disruption of the current emergency system, which is an integrated mode with DSU and which has proven its effectiveness – at least during the pandemic, the effectiveness of unitary coordination was very clear – and going back in time to a model in which everyone was in a different place only weakens the system and ruins what has been built. We move forward on an integrated model. We work with the Ministry of Health, but the coordination is in one place. Not only the ambulance, the doctor, but also the firemen, and the SMURD, the helicopter, do not go to an intervention“, stated Raed Arafat, who was in Braşov on Thursday, on the occasion of the inauguration of the new UPU-SMURD building.
He argued that he saw no reason for this “rupture”. “Since we developed this system in 2007, we have developed it to go together. (…) I don’t see any reason now to break now, some in the Internal Affairs, others in the Health, and to ruin what turned out to be very effective “, said the head of DSU.