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Milija Zeković, SBB CEO

Technological Innovations Are In Our DNA

We want to enter the mobile telecommunications market and offer our users 4P services, i.e., a combination of broadband internet access, television and fixed-line...

Maria Boldor, Principal At Horváth

Key Challenges & Opportunities

The report “Finance at the Crossroads of Coronavirus, Digitalisation and Sustainability” presents key challenges and opportunities for the business world Management consulting company Horváth published...

Nataša Bezmarević, Branch Manager Serbia, DB Engineering & Consulting GmbH

Focus On Electrifying Train Lines

Deutsche Bahn has been providing engineering, consulting and train operation services, as well as digital systems, for many years and has successfully implemented railway...

Porto Montenegro

A Life Less Ordinary

Founded some 15 years ago by a consortium of visionary developers, Porto Montenegro is set in the spectacularly beautiful Bay of Kotor on Montenegro’s...

Ivan Crnojević, CEO, ELMED d.o.o.

ELMED – We can do more

The future belongs to modern, innovative companies that carefully plan and strategically manage their business. For this reason, Elmed doo in Temerin, winner of...

Dr Jasmina Knežević, Founder And Director Of Bel Medic

Only Intelligent And Creative People Cooperating Will Save Humanity

We are not a rich, well-organised country with a practise of planning, but our public healthcare sector reorganised itself quickly and successfully. However, the opportunity to maximise the resources of both the private and state sectors was not utilised.

The pandemic has taught humanity a lesson. It has shown that nobody is privileged and that we can only survive if we seek a solution jointly. We thought until recently that there is no health without a lot of money and a successful economy, but now we see that there is no economic progress and survival without healthy people, healthy nature and biological equilibrium.

It was a year ago that the novel coronavirus found us with over 111,000 employees in the public health sector and about 17,000 in the private sector (2018). This is better than the average in the region and worse than the average in the EU, especially in terms of the number of mid-level medical staff, where we have 628 per 100,000 inhabitants and the EU has 1,441.

Over 55% of our doctors are aged over 50. We have a shortage of specialists, especially anaesthesiologists, intensive care specialists and emergency medicine specialists, as well as a major shortage of nurses.

Our hospitals are mostly housed in old and unsuitable facilities, while many new ones have central heating and cooling systems that aren’t adequate for such an infectious virus.

Although the initial outbreak of the pandemic was a terrible blow to the healthcare system, which didn’t even have basic protective equipment for employees, and although individuals and the crisis staff didn’t handle themselves in the best way, with their contradictory statements, now, a year on, we can be satisfied with how we’ve done.

Although it is small in terms of capacity, in terms of efficiency private healthcare system can be an excellent complement to serbia’s state health system

We are not a rich, well-organised country with a practise of planning, but our public healthcare sector reorganised itself quickly and successfully.

Clinical Hospital Centres have been converted into COVID Hospitals, and two new large-capacity COVID Hospitals were constructed in just four months. Public hospitals, as the only places were COVID-positive patients could be treated, were excellently supplied with all relevant treatments for severe forms of COVID, which were provided according to world protocols. Serbia has procured vaccines from all manufacturers and citizens are able to choose, which is a privilege compared to the rest of the world.

In term of what could have been better, I would single out the PCR test, which the private sector was unable to conduct. This resulted in the disease spreading more, because contacts and asymptomatic patients were not tested, rather only those with a temperature exceeding 38°C.

This situation eased with the appearance of a reliable antigen test that could also be done privately. Secondly, the private sector wasn’t adequately included in handling the pandemic. Although it is small in terms of capacity, in terms of efficiency private healthcare system it can be an excellent complement to Serbia’s state health system. A small number of courageous, better-organised private institutions got to grips with the outpatient treatment of COVID-positive patients, and provided a great contribution to the sense of security and accessibility to patients. There was no legal regulating of hospital treatment in the private sector.

Thirdly, there was no reason for COVID-negative patients – at the expense of the Fund – not to undergo operations and diagnostic procedures in the private sector that could not be performed in clinical centres, because they were converted to COVID hospitals. Waiting lists were huge for hip an knee replacements, coronary angiography procedures, stent implantations, tumour surgeries, scanners and magnetic resonance imaging. If that had been permitted, many chronically ill and oncology patients would have received solutions.

The COVID pandemic is still continuing, many lives have been lost, the economy has ground to a halt. Nobody knows how long this will last. All that’s left for us to do is to learn quickly, research new medicines and vaccines, and strive to be faster and wiser than the virus. It is absolutely clear that we should maximally utilise the resources of both the private and public sectors. More than anything that’s come before, this novel coronavirus warns us that trust and cooperation among all intelligent and creative people is the only way for humanity to survive.

Comment by Zoran Panović

Scholzing

Macedonia was one of the six republics of Tito’s Federal Socialist Yugoslavia. Even back then, Todor Zhivkov’s Bulgaria had intentions to assimilate the identity...

Aleksandar Vlahović, President Of The Association Of Serbian Economists

A Road To Avoid

Possible explicit or tacit punishment of Serbia by the EU, in response to what the EU deems to be inappropriate political decisions, could be...

Jurij Bajec Ph.D., Special Advisor At The Economics Institute And Full Professor At The University Of Belgrade Faculty Of Economics

Open Balkan Is A Good Initiative

During times of great uncertainty and deeply disrupted international economic and political relations, Serbia should seek additional forms of economic connection that complement its...

Milojko Arsić Ph.D., Professor At The University Of Belgrade Faculty Of Economics

There Will Always Be Bread, But Not Smarts

Even during the times of the harshest sanctions imposed during the 1990s, enough food products were still available in Serbia. Temporary shortages of such...

Investments Yet To Convert Into Significant Bilateral Trade

Although trade cooperation between the U.S. and Serbia remains below the level of a billion dollars, the two countries...

A Friend In Need Is A Friend Indeed

Relations between Serbia and America determine the future of our country and the Western Balkans as a whole. It...

New French Investments Expected

The visit of French President Emmanuel Macron to Serbia marked a turning point in the development of economic relations...

We Urge Responsible Business Conduct

If we want Serbia to have modern, green mining, we must have the highest standards in the field of...

EU To Extend Digital Covid Certificate For Travel Until June 2023

As the current EU Digital Covid Certificate rules are set to expire on 30 June, the Committee on Civil...

EU To Extend Digital Covid Certificate For Travel Until June 2023

As the current EU Digital Covid Certificate rules are set to expire on 30 June, the Committee on Civil...

Iran Applies To Join BRICS Club

Iran, which holds the world's second largest gas reserves, has applied to join the BRICS group of Brazil, Russia,...

Scottish Government Seeks Independence Vote In October 2023

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said on Tuesday that the Scottish parliament would publish an independence referendum bill with...

Ambassador Thomas Schieb: Sanctions On Russia Will Help Serbia Progress

German Ambassador to Serbia Thomas Schieb said that democracy, freedom of thought and expression, independent institutions and human rights...

Eu Clinches Deal On Mandatory Gas Storage For Next Winter

European Union negotiators agreed on mandatory gas storage obligations for EU countries, aiming for the the bloc’s storages to...

EU To Extend Digital Covid Certificate For Travel Until June 2023

As the current EU Digital Covid Certificate rules are set to expire on 30 June, the Committee on Civil...

Iran Applies To Join BRICS Club

Iran, which holds the world's second largest gas reserves, has applied to join the BRICS group of Brazil, Russia,...

Scottish Government Seeks Independence Vote In October 2023

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said on Tuesday that the Scottish parliament would publish an independence referendum bill with...

Ambassador Thomas Schieb: Sanctions On Russia Will Help Serbia Progress

German Ambassador to Serbia Thomas Schieb said that democracy, freedom of thought and expression, independent institutions and human rights...

Eu Clinches Deal On Mandatory Gas Storage For Next Winter

European Union negotiators agreed on mandatory gas storage obligations for EU countries, aiming for the the bloc’s storages to...
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