The Syrian regime didn’t receive a single applicant for the latest initiative started by the Ministry of Health to address the shortfall in ambulance staff, which has been increasing for years.
The Director of Ambulances and Emergencies in the Ministry, Tawfiq Hasaba, told the pro-regime Tishreen newspaper that “more than one contest was announced, but no one applied to it, due to the lack of incentives or the nature of the work compensation,” amid a severe need for staff.
Hasaba said that the law, under which the system operates, had been in place for 40 years, and had gaps, beginning with the monthly remuneration, and even depriving future staff of meals as they are not legally allocated meals unlike other hospital and medical institution staff.
He said that one of the reasons was also that “those who graduate from nursing schools for the ambulance system’s benefit are mostly men, who will frequently perform military service or leave the country immediately after graduating. A segment of the staff has reached retirement age and the gap has not been addressed.”
He noted the need to put to work an entire ambulance fleet of up to 2,000 drivers and 2,000 nurses, and that there were now only about 700 drivers and 470 nurses in all provinces, and that most were men.
Regarding the harm to the ambulance system, a source said that the fleet was composed of 578 ambulances before 2011, and that about 50 percent of these had gone out of service because of burning, a lack of spare parts, or the difficulty in repairing them.
He said that the current decrees and laws that the Assad regime had issued for Syrian employees over the last few years had had a large impact on the living and economic situation, and the purchasing power of the Syrian employee had declined greatly, with the monthly salary barely enough to secure needs for a few days of the month.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.