The Bolivian government announced Thursday a celebration in March alongside the country’s social movements to begin planning for a new system of free medical care “for the people”.
The decision was announced at a meeting in the Government Palace between Bolivian President Evo Morales and the National Coordinator for Change (Conalcam), which brings together the biggest social organizations in the country.
According to the executive secretary of the trade union, Federation of Mining Workers, Orlando Gutierrez, the meeting will be held on March 5 and 6 with the participation of all groups, social movements and trade unions.
"Health is an issue for everyone and we have a duty to provide solutions to the Bolivian population with the implementation of a system that guarantees free access and quality of services," said Gutierrez, reported Prensa Latina.
Morales made the announcement for universal healthcare after strikes were held by some doctors in the country over the last month, who, the leader said, had been trying to privatize healthcare by halting government policies aimed at improving the public system.
However, on Tuesday, an agreement was announced between the doctors and the government to collectively recreate the country’s medical system, putting an end to the 40-day strike.
Last week, the president reported that the country’s 2016-2020 social-economic development plan aims to achieve universal access to health, with 200 projects underway in order to achieve this.
The plan also aims to complete the construction of about 50 hospitals in nine departments, including four that specialize in oncology, gastroenterology, cardiology and nephrology, estimated to cost US$1.7 billion dollars.