"If we let them, we will end up with a wonderful NHS on paper" – The Economic Journal

The president of CDS-PP, Assunção Cristas, stressed on Tuesday, at the closing of the parliamentary days that took place in Oporto, that the presentation of a first proposal of the Government Program on the use of private individuals in case of excessive delay in the marking of first specialist visits in public hospitals was not a coincidence. "We did not start in health by chance. It was one of the themes that the CDS has dedicated itself more in this legislature ", said the party leader.

In his speech, he spared no criticism of the way in which the government and its parliamentary partners dealt with "an area that is permanently hostage to the ideological debate of the left, more concerned with discussing PPPs than concrete access to health care." "If we leave them, we will end up with a wonderful SNS on paper, depleted in reality and unable to receive more patients," said the CDS-PP president.

To this very reserved diagnosis, Cristas countered the "sensible" and "pragmatic" proposal to open the choice to any hospital, even if it is private or of the social sector, when the waiting time for the first specialty visit exceeds a ceiling in the hospital unit of reference of each user. "This is about importing the same model that was adopted for the surgeries and that has proven to be good," he said.

After the poor result in the European elections, in which the CDS-PP had only 6.2 percent of the votes and failed to elect the number two of the list, Pedro Mota Soares, Assunção Cristas took advantage of the closing of the parliamentary days for, for between praising the "present and staunch opposition" of the current centrist deputies, to launch the general lines of the Program of Government to the legislative ones.

"We live today in a world in permanent change. An economy that is increasingly global and fast. An increasingly digital economy, requiring new skills, much more open to competition and new. A persistent demographic challenge, a planet crossed by the climate challenge, which requires response and adaptation by countries and people, "he said, ensuring that the political proposal that will be presented" is precisely a response to the challenges that lie ahead ", through of "solutions that will prepare the country and the Portuguese to overcome the challenges of this changing world".

Something that, in the opinion of Asuncion Cristas, is not being done by the Executive of António Costa. "We are becoming less competitive because of the laziness of the government," he said, pointing to Portugal's fall in the world competitiveness report and ensuring that "the parties on our left do not know how to deal with change."

Without revealing more about the Government Program, Cristas left the promise that "over the next few weeks" proposals will be submitted relating to a number of areas he has identified. In addition to education, health, vocational training, science, safety, debureaucratization, employment, family support, entrepreneurship, attention to the elderly and encouragement of talent and merit, they also include climate change.

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