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Costa Rican Caja reports significant delays for surgeries due to strike

July 5, 2019

Costa Rica’s Social Security System (CCSS) reported on Thursday that 42.3% of the surgeries scheduled for that day were canceled due to workers’ protests against the economic policies promoted by the government.

According to a CCSS report, a total of 52 of the 123 surgeries scheduled for Thursday were suspended.

The impact was most significant for outpatient surgeries. CCSS reported that 57% of those procedures (146 of 258 scheduled) were postponed.

“The impact on surgeries was presented, basically, because there is no support staff to give continuity to these services,” said the managing doctor for CCSS, Mario Ruiz. “We will activate a contingency plan as soon as the protests end to reschedule these surgeries and do them as soon as possible.”

Ruiz said that 1,023 CCSS or medical staff were on strike Thursday.

CCSS authorities also indicated that they have started a process through which the strike can be declared illegal.

According to data from CCSS, the strike caused the suspension of 814 out of 23,138 scheduled general medical appointments; this translates into 3.5% of the day’s total.

Similar numbers were reported for specialized consultations, where 370 appointments of 10,043 scheduled were stopped, a 3.7% affectation.

“All the emergency services in the country are working, and external consultations are also taking place normally except in the places where there is an official participating in the movement,” Ruiz said. “We urge patients to come to their appointments so that they do not lose them, because there are staff that are working.”

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This story was originally published by Semanario Universidad on July 4, 2019. It was translated and republished with permission by The Tico Times. Read the original report at Semanario Universidad here.

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