Medical services are collapsing in many parts of the nation. Doctor shortages are especially acute in obstetric-gynecological, pediatric and emergency care departments. It is high time that the government, lawmakers and the public seriously start discussing how to increase the number of doctors and nurses and how to improve their working conditions, including securing sufficient budgetary funds.

A telling statistic in the current crisis is that, in 2006, 667 pregnant women being transported by ambulance were refused admittance by three or more hospitals. Also, as many as 1,012 pregnant women had to wait more than 30 minutes in ambulances until a hospital could be found that would accept them.

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