The corona virus has greatly changed everyday life, and more than ever we are aware that "health comes first" is not an empty phrase. Doctors, nurses, technicians and other professionals employed in the health care system repeatedly deserve our respect and gratitude.
Doctor Aksentije Tosic is one of them.
Dr. Tošić is the acting director of the Public Health Institute in Čačak, and he is an epidemiologist by profession.
"Our institution represents practically the entire region of the Moravicki district, which includes the municipalities of Gornji Milanovac, Ivanjica, Lucani and the city of Cacak with over 200,000 inhabitants. The task of our institution, combined with two more hospitals and four community health centers is to work together and keep the epidemiological situation under control, "said Dr. Tosic.
Public Health Institute Čačak is one of the health institutions that received "reinforcement". With the help of the European Union funds, 200 local experts - doctors, medical technicians, administrative workers - were hired for a period of nine months, in order to help the existing staff to cope with the increased number of patients with Covid 19, but also to help during vaccination process.
Dr. Tošić has only words of praise for his new colleagues:
"They helped us a lot, they meant a lot to us. They are employed during testing, vaccination, in the laboratory, transport of tests…" Dr. Tošić praises his young colleagues. And as he says, they are also satisfied that their first contract (for six months) has been extended and that they have been given the opportunity to work.
"We can be absolutely satisfied with the results we achieve and which we compare with other regions in our country, as well as with other countries in Europe and in the world. I must say that no region could withstand that without the great help, as we have been receiving from the Ministry of Health of our country and also from the help we received from our neighbours, primarily from the institutions of the European Union", concludes Dr. Tošić.
At the request of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Serbia, the European Union financed the hiring of 200 health professionals for the duration of 9 months amid an increase of Covid-19 cases in Serbia and the ongoing vaccination campaign. The health personnel are comprised of physicians, medical technicians, and administrative staff, supporting Institutes of Public Health, Primary Health Care Centres, Covid-19 Clinics, and a number of key laboratories across Serbia. The personnel is deployed to assist the existing healthcare staff until June 2021.
European Union (EU) donations to healthcare in Serbia amount to more than 200 million euros, and the European Investment Bank (EIB) has provided another 250 million euros in preferential loans, from 2000 until today.
The EU has equipped hospitals, laboratories, public health institutes and blood transfusion institutes and provided 264 fully equipped ambulances to health centres across Serbia, 134 of which were delivered with respirators.