Syria’s Doctors Fear Compulsory Service Despite Damascus Government Decisions

Syrian doctors fear conscription into the Syrian army lasting a year and a half, writes North Press.

On Wednesday, doctors in Damascus expressed their fear of the decisions issued by the Medical Services Department on Monday, at the General Command of the Syrian government forces, confirming that the mandatory military service for doctors will be a year and a half long without reserve.

Syria is witnessing a massive flight of human capital, especially doctors. In the meantime, the government is trying to persuade them to stay and serve their country, amid the reluctance of young people to join the military service — especially since the duration of the military service has reached nearly eight years or more during the war.

In December, the Doctors Syndicate, in coordination with the Ministry of Defense and the Medical Services Department, obtained a decision allowing the doctor to choose the point in which he serves, in addition to allowing him to open a private clinic while performing compulsory service.

Bashar Perri (a pseudonym), a resident at al-Assad University Hospital, told North Press, “these decisions are an attempt to win over doctors amid the great migration.”

There is no guarantee that the ministry will not keep the doctor when there is a numerical shortage of staff, he added.

There is nobody that can guarantee that a doctor will be released when he joins the army, according to Perri.

Issa Muzain (a pseudonym), a general surgeon at al-Mujtahid Hospital in central Damascus, told North Press that, “in addition to the duration of service, the living situation is the main reason for not joining the service.”

“The medical point to which the doctor is dispatched may be suffering from a lack of staff or pressure, so he has more shifts, and thus it is difficult to work in his clinic,” he added.

 

This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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