Nurses and physiotherapists will gather in protest on 10 February in the health centres of the Valencia region, to denounce “the serious situation of deterioration and precariousness” that they suffer and demand that the department of health “do not continue to abandon” Primary Care and apply “urgent effective measures” that improve the health care received by all citizens, as reported by the SATSE union.

The call for concentrations in the health centres of Valencia, and in all the provincial capitals throughout the country, marks the beginning of the new strategy of protest actions and mobilisations that the nursing union will promote in 2022 to denounce “the serious deterioration” of the health system and demand improvements in the professional and working conditions of nurses and physiotherapists.

SATSE has initiated the action in defence of health and its professionals in health centres once the Covid-19 pandemic has made “special relevance the numerous problems and deficiencies” that Primary Care in Valencia “has been dragging for many years” and that the Ministry of Health has been “incapable of resolving, which have a direct impact on the health care that must be provided to citizens”.

In this sense, they point out the “structural and chronic shortage” of nurses and physiotherapists, “lack of means and resources and continuous care overload and tension” as the main problems that the Covid-19 crisis has aggravated and that mean that people must wait days or weeks to be seen in person.

In addition, they point out that this overload leaves professionals without the dedicated time they would like, or that the population can no longer benefit from health prevention and promotion programs because they have been postponed.

The nursing union hopes that these concentrations will mean that the nurses and physiotherapists of Valencia have the opportunity to “raise their voice, jointly and unitedly” and demand that Primary Care “deserves and needs a change for the health and general well-being of the whole society” and that “professionals cannot endure any longer a physically and mentally exhausting situation that puts their own health at serious risk”.

SATSE underlines that the time has come to defend the health and well-being of all people, as well as an improvement in their working and professional conditions, exercising their legitimate right to public mobilisation and protest.

“They have left us no other alternative than to raise our voices in health centres to try to avoid damage to our health system that will be irreparable in a short time,” they say.

The Nursing Union is well aware of the tiredness and exhaustion at all levels suffered by nurses and physiotherapists, after two years of “tireless” fight against the pandemic, but they stress that their participation is “decisive so that, with the strength that give reason and justice, defend and demand what unites us all, such as achieving a public, universal and quality health system, and recognised and protected professionals”.