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Monday, July 16 2018 @ 08:47 AM EDT

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Sáez-Llorens Sustained A $4 Billion Budget In Fifteen Minutes

HealthcareIn less than 15 minutes, the general director of the Social Security Fund (CSS), Guillermo Sáez-Llorens, sustained the budget of 4.4 billion dollars estimated for the institution for 2014 before the Budget Committee of the National Assembly.

He gave his speech before 8:00 a.m., time in which his appearance was scheduled for.

At the meeting, six deputies from the government party and one deputy from the opposition were present. These deputies were José Muñoz, Manuel Cohen, Carlos Afú, Rubén Frías and Raúl Hernández from the Democratic Change, Tito Rodríguez from the Molirena and later on Alcibiades Vásquez from the Panameñista Political Party arrived.

The budget for 2014 for the CSS will be 4.4 billion dollars, 20% more than the budget estimated for this year.

Regarding the methodology for the discussion of his budget, Afú said only five deputies were missing for completing the required quorum of the committee.

This way, Sáez Llorens’s speech finished at 7:55 a.m., without receiving any questions regarding the deaths of the nine newborns after they were poisoned with heparin in the Neonatology Room of the Arnulfo Arias Madrid Hospital from the CSS. (Prensa)

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Draft Bill For Recruiting Foreign Doctors Will Be Discussed Next Week

HealthcareNext week the Health Committee from the National Assembly will discuss the recruitment of foreign physicians.

The draft bill was presented by the Health Minsiter, Javier Díaz.

Pablo Vargas, president of the Health Committee, said they will discuss the draft bill point by point.

According to the deputy, a proposal of this kind must be thoroughly discussed in order to not cause any disconformity within the unions, health authorities and the Legislative Branch.

The meeting will be held at the Blue room in the Legislative Building in order to have more participants.

The draft bill 611 would authorize the recruitment of foreign specialists to fill vacancies, especially in the interior of the country.

The draft bill establishes aspects such as the recruitment made by the Ministry of Health and the Social Security Fund, the reality nowadays of a lack of physicians and the open vacancies at different health institutions, the priority that will be given to Panamanian doctors and the recruitment for two years.

According to the Health authorities, there is a need of at least 190 doctors and approximately 208 specialists in different fields.

During the last three years, the Minsa has made three public calls in the years 2011, 2012 and 2013 for hiring national doctors in hard access areas and in the interior of the country. Not a single doctor went to these calls.

This situation could get worse because approximately 124 specialists and 111 general physicians hired by the Minsa have reached their retirement age. Even though there is no rule in Panama for doctors to leave at a certain age, many of them might decide to do so. (Estrella)

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Over 200 Patients Are Waiting To Be Operated From Their Cataracts

HealthcareThe Social Security Fund started a program for cataracts surgery, through which they look forward to reduce the waiting list, which currently has 200 patients, only in Panama West.

The operations are being conducted by only one eye doctor at the Santiago Barraza Hospital in La Chorrera.

Eric Perdono, inter-institutional medical director in La Chorrera, said they will be operating approximately five patients each Saturday for four months.

Approximately five operations to eliminate cataracts are conducted per week at this hospital.

Perdono said they expect to treat 100 patients during these four months. (Prensa)

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CSS Cannot Give A Definite Conclusion On The Deaths Of The Newborns Yet

HealthcareThe committee in charge of investigating the deaths in the Neonatology Room of the Social Security Fund said they don’t have a definite conclusion about the case so far and don’t know how long this whole research will take.

The members of the committee, which is formed by foreign specialist and other local researchers, said many of these tests and analyses have to be carried out abroad.

The precedence of benzyl alcohol but to a lesser extent from the scientific literature related to the fatalities was also recognized.

Earlier in the day, the Health Ministry Javier Diaz said the foreign medical team will continue taking samples and tissue and over 40 medications, which will have to be studied based in 15 different criteria. (Panama America)

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28 People In Panama Are Affected By The AH1N1

HealthcareA total of 28 patients with AH1N1 (swine flu) have been reported so far, according to reports from the Health Ministry, and four of these cases are in the city; which is why experts call out on the population to go to health center to get their shots.

Children under five years old, pregnant women, patients with chronic diseases and elders are the most vulnerable for this type of flu, according to Jorge Hassan, director of the Metropolitan Health Region, and said this flu is “here to stay.”

Some of the symptoms include fever, cough, and common cold; very similar to the common flu. Physicians recommend everyone to go to a health center whenever they suffer from one of these symptoms to get a test and determine if it’s AH1N1. (Telemetro)

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Martinelli Assured That He Will Promote The Recruitment Of Foreign Physicians

HealthcarePresident Ricardo Martinelli said he is in favor of recruiting foreign physicians.

"Panama only has 26 nephrologists, six of these live in the interior and the rest in the city."

He also said there aren’t enough doctors to assist the large amount of citizens that suffer from this condition (kidney failure).

He recognized the performance of the director of the Social Security Fund, Guillermo Sáez Llorens, as well as the Directive Board and the rest of the officials.

Martinelli gave this statement during the inauguration of the new Hemodialysis Unit in San Cristóbal. (Panama America)

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Sáez Llorens Will Not Resign From His Position

HealthcareDespite the criticism regarding the management of the Social Security Fund, led by Guillermo Sáez Llorens, director of this institution, he stated that he will not resign to his position and he will remain in it until his term is over.

During a statement in the TV show “Face to Face” from RPC channel, Sáez Llorens said he is satisfied of his management in the CSS, and said he will not leave before his term is over in 2014.

"We have accomplished many goals regarding the modernization of the institution,” said the specialist in technological systems, who considered that despite the criticism, they have not failed in any aspect during his management.

"We have gone through difficult situations, but we do not count them as failures. We have learned from our mistakes to avoid doing them in the future,” he said.

Regarding the death of the nine newborns at the Hospital from the CSS, Sáez Llorens expressed how much he regrets the situation, and said that together with the Health Ministry they will get to the bottom of the issue that caused the deaths of these children. (Critica)

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The CSS Reported One Of The Affected Babies Died After Complications

HealthcareIn a statement, the Social Security Fund (CSS) reported that one of the five surviving premature babies died on Wednesday night at the Dr. Arnulfo Arias Madrid Hospital, after complications in the Neonatology Room of the hospital.

This is the ninth victim in the hospital, and the cause of death is still unknown.

The report explains the newborn had other complications, which worsened his condition, causing the unfortunate outcome.

During the autopsy on three of the deceased babies it was revealed they had a cerebral hemorrhage, sepsis, kidney and liver failure, and they had traces of alcohol.

The authorities are investigating the case to determine the exact cause of death and if it was caused by human error. (TVN)

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Director Of The CSS States They Are Going Through A Time Of Crisis

HealthcareThe director of the Social Security Fund (CSS), Guillermo Sáez Llorens said the health care entity is in one of the worst times of crisis due to the recent events in the hospital complex.

The director was referring to the case currently under investigation about the 8 babies that died last month, and said this was not an easy case to solve and therefore they are thoroughly investigating the case.

"It's the first time a tragedy like this happens in a Neonatology Room, considered as one of the rooms known for its dedication to saving lives," said Saez Llorens.

The doctor said they cannot determine the cause of these deaths at the moment, but their only hypothesis so far is that one of the medications had no medical record and it was proven that there was a mixture of medications.

He also said they are constantly meeting with the families to keep them informed about the investigations. (Estrella)

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Alert Caused By Equine Encephalitis

HealthcareAfter the detection of 22 cases of equine encephalitis, the Ministry of Agricultural Development started a vaccination campaign throughout several farms located in Coclé, Darién, Veraguas, Bocas del Toro and Panama East.

According to Bredio Velasco, deputy director of Animal Health of the MIDA, technicians from this institution will vaccinate three thousand horses between 6 months old and two and a half years old from 12 areas defined as risk zones.

According to the official, the analysis from the Gorgas Institute shows 88 suspicious cases.

This disease, which is transferred from the mosquitos Culex and Aedes aegypti infected by the encephalomyelitis virus from the East or West to horses and humans, affects the neurological system, causing disorientation and decreasing reflexes.

Reports from the Ministry of Health reveal that five children were affected by this disease in 2010, and a two and a half year old girl died from the disease. (Siglo)

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