President Sarkozy calls for major hospital reform

22nd May 2007, Comments 0 comments

DUNKIRK, France, May 22, 2007 (AFP) - President Nicolas Sarkozy, on his first official trip to the French regions since taking power last week, called Tuesday for a reform of the country's hospitals.

DUNKIRK, France, May 22, 2007 (AFP) - President Nicolas Sarkozy, on his first official trip to the French regions since taking power last week, called Tuesday for a reform of the country's hospitals.

Speaking during a visit to a hospital in the coastal city of Dunkirk, he said he wanted to "reform hospitals" in order to respond to the "malaise" in the health sector. 

"I want the health minister to carry out a major dialogue on the mission of hospitals," he said during a meeting with doctors and nurses.

One of the priorities, he said, was to free up hospital beds and to cut waiting times in emergency departments by excluding patients with minor problems.

Sarkozy also called for networks to be set up outside hospitals to care for the elderly. 

The president took over last Wednesday from Jacques Chirac promising social and economic reform.

Just weeks after the hard-fought presidential contest, French voters return to the polls on June 10 and 17 to elect the 577 members of the lower house National Assembly.

Sarkozy's newly-appointed Prime Minister Francois Fillon will spearhead the campaign for the right-wing Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) party, which opinion polls predict will win a large majority.


Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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