MEPs reject measure restricting freedom of settlement

The objective of this amendment was to impose stricter rules on the installation of doctors on the territory. He finally collected only 127 votes in favor, insufficient against the 168 elected officials who voted against.

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The hemicycle of the National Assembly during the debate on access to care, June 14, 2023. (QUENTIN DE GROEVE / HANS LUCAS)

The measure was opposed by the government. The deputies rejected, on Wednesday June 14, a transpartisan amendment (168 votes against 127) whose objective was to impose stricter rules in the installation of doctors on the territory, in order to better distribute caregivers and fight against medical deserts. It provided that private doctors and dental surgeons who wish to settle in areas already well provided with caregivers must obtain authorization from the Regional Health Agency, conditional on the departure of a practitioner practicing the same specialty.

The amendment was carried by the socialist Guillaume Garot, and a transpartisan group of elected officials from almost all political groups, including those of the presidential camp. The RN was not associated. The deputies were brought to decide within the framework of the examination in first reading of the text against the medical deserts, carried by Frédéric Valletoux (Horizons).

“Our health cannot depend on our postal code”

“The incentive policies practiced for decades have not produced the results we expected. We tell our doctors: ‘Don’t go and settle in the territories that are already well provided. Go and settle wherever else you want'”insisted Guillaume Garot on Wednesday. “Our health cannot depend on our postal code. We continue!”he reacted in particular, in the process, on his Twitter account.

Strongly opposed to the introduction of such a measure, the Minister of Health, François Braun, castigated an amendment which risks “stigmatize doctors” and train “refusals of installation, retirements and disappointments. “The real subject is that we have few caregivers”, retorted the rapporteur Frédéric Valletoux, pleading for a regulatory system within five or ten years, the time that more doctors are trained.

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