Today I read an open letter to PM Rama regarding the health system in Albania. The letter goes to great lengths in detailing the events which occurred to a Dutch citizen, Ton Daans, living in Albania for the past 5 years as a non-residential expert in the field of corrections. He was injured and taken to the Trauma Hospital in Tirana and in the letter recounts his experience in detail in the hopes that the Albanian government open its eyes to the plight of their Health System.

This is something that I have been expressing to people here for the last 10 years. The Public Health System is a disgrace! Not because of lack of competent medical staff, although that is dwindling in time as well, but because of the conditions under which the staff are forced to operate: outdated medical equipment or lack thereof, lack of supplies, lack of hygiene particularly in the rooms and bathrooms, lack of medicine and the list goes on.

Why? Why does a country who aspires to enter the EU have such horrible conditions in their public hospitals? I’ll tell you why. For the last 31 years the government has done nothing to improve their medical standards. The DP was in charge for the better part of the first 20 years (1992-2013) and they did nothing. The SP has been in charge for the last 10 years or so and they have done nothing.

What is the government doing with all the funds available? Building resorts, shopping centers, tearing down theaters to build some more commercial buildings, all the while the medical system is receiving zero attention. Oh yes, they talk a good game, although I never hear anything about revamping the health system and bringing it up to standards equal to or better than the rest of the western world. I never hear anything about incentives for young people to study medicine. I don’t see any money being invested in their public hospitals, but I do see buildings being built, roads being repaired to attract tourism for the newly built resorts, mainly in the south, so that when tourists come and are injured they can be taken to a public hospital that can’t attend to them as they should.

It is fair to say that the government as a whole, past and present, have failed the Albanian people. It is also fair to say that the Albanian people who are rising to protest should do so for their own interest and not attend a rock concert coordinated by a has been dictator to try and remove a current one and go back in time instead of moving forward.

They should protest for health, education, decommunization, infrastructure, lower taxes for businesses so that it attracts foreign investors thus bringing employment, property rights, justice for the victims of communism. They should protest against TV personalities who glamorize communists and their crimes by promoting their books and having them on their show!

But most of all they should look for new leadership in someone with a clean past. A leader with a true love for Albania and its people. A leader who cares, a leader who is not full of empty promises, one who sympathizes with them. A leader with a purpose to benefit them and Albania, one who has zero ties to the communist past. A leader who truly believes in democracy and the rights of all people. A leader who wants to lead a free nation. A leader tough on crime, drugs and human trafficking. A leader with conviction. One who doesn’t blow with the wind. One who says what he means and means what he says. Not like many of the current MPs who follow a leader one day, hate him the next, then love him again, if that’s where the wind takes them.

I don’t see many out there who would stand by their convictions at the risk of losing their precious seat.

We need a leader who loves all of Albania, from north to south. And a leader who puts Albania before anything or anyone else. A patriot!

I don’t see any in the current political movement, do you?

Bianca Gjomarkaj


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