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CCSS Is Planning to Invest to Improve Services at the EBAIS

By Oliver Pérez

As the number of patients increases, it is no secret that the EBAIS public health clinics operated by the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS) are overcrowded, with inadequate staff.

Every day the Caja faces this struggle, while many men and women line up in the darkness of dawn in front of the main entrance of the building where a sign with the acronym "EBAIS - CCSS" hangs.

However, this year's Caja budget has been increased from ¢208.205 million colones to ¢220.529 million. This spending plan, which was announced by the Caja's Executive Director during a visit to Nicoya, will allow the institution to implement 63 new EBAIS projects.


According to Ileana Balmaceda, through this increase in resources they are trying to ensure that throughout the country people will have access to basic health services. In addition, funds will be used to purchase new equipment, as well as to implement new subdivisions and to recruit new staff for healthcare centers.

"With these resources we will help Nicoya's EBAIS. We are in the process of recruiting new staff, which is what most affects the quality of care", explained Balmaceda to the VON during a phone interview.

Given this news, a light of hope now shines for María Gabriela Díaz Díaz, who we found during a June dawn at the door of the Nicoya EBAIS, waiting for a medical appointment.

If the CCSS starts opening new EBAIS clinics throughout the Nicoya region, as well as providing additional resources, Keilor Fabián Jiménez, a patient in need of their services, will no longer have to get up so early, every time headaches interrupt his sleep, in order to get a spot.

The Problem
There are currently 982 EBAIS clinics that operate in 103 Healthcare Areas throughout the country. A study conducted by the Ministerio de Salud in 2003 showed that there are many flaws in the quality of care, especially when it comes to young girls at risk of getting pregnant, those who are victims of elderly abuse and young people with drug addictions.

The Caja has relentlessly explained that the biggest issue is the lack of staff, this being the main complaint of patients at the 844 Equipos Básicos de Atención en Salud (EBAIS) that currently operate in the country. According to the CCSS regulations, physicians may see a maximum of four patients per hour; however, physicians are forced to see up to seven patients per hour - almost twice the legal regulations.

Although many patients acknowledge the good work ethic and disposition of the CCSS staff that cares for them at Nicoya's EBAIS, they are also aware that uncomfortable conditions and a lack of equipment and pharmaceutical drugs are also responsible for the poor quality of care.


More Regional News

President Chinchilla's Visit to Nicoya Marked By Protests

Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla visited Nicoya for the 187th Anniversary celebration of the Anexión del Partido de Nicoya to Costa Rica; an area that still awaits the government's help in order to see greater progress.

Confrontation Ends in Gunshot

A private security official was held by police for questioning following the shooting early morning on Friday July 22, of Leonel Alvarado Juarez, owner of Nosara restaurant Rancho Tico, on the street in front of Bar La Banana.

Guiones Tourist Police Will Keep Working Throughout 2011
• Nosara police station inaugurates renovated facilities

Agnes Pinheiro, President of the local Security Association, confirmed that they are receiving financial assistance from a group of people in order to pay for the Guiones Tourist Police maintenance expenses and therefore she is feeling "optimistic" about the police station's future.

Chopping down trees in Nosara - Interview with Heiner Avila
"He told me that he had the permits…"

On March 27, the Ministry of Environment, Energy and Telecommunications (MINAET) of Ostional initiated an investigation of the cutting of 20 pochote trees without the proper permits.

Nosareños are Getting Ready to Protest on July 25th at the Nicoya Park

Over one thousand Nosareños signed a petition letter sent at the beginning of June to Costa Rican President, Laura Chinchilla, asking for "real and tangible" solutions to the four most pressing issues: the possible closure of the Nosara dump, the overcrowded EBAIS, which is petitioned to become a 24-hour clinic, the poor road conditions and the paving of the 28 kilometers that separate Samara from Nosara and the need to obtain a police car for the Fuerza Pública.

Confusion over Concessions in Samara: Is City Hall or the ICT Responsible?

Anyone looking for a concession or requesting a building permit for land in the maritime zone of Samara Beach will likely run into frustration and find their hands tied until a new regulatory plan is approved, which could take another year or more. The holdup is causing problems for area residents and businesses, including Intercultura, a language school that recently constructed a new building in Samara.

Laura Hangs On Life While Stretching Her Spine

When you have a headache, how much do you complain about it? Or about a toothache? How much would you complain if you had never talked or heard anything? Or could you complain at all, if you were losing your walking skills day by day at age 11?

Lost Children of The Chorotegas
Is one of the eight indigenous groups of Costa Rica, the Chorotegas, vanishing?

An old, green and yellow painted school bus departs from Nicoya Bus Terminal at 11:00 a.m., only one of two daily buses for this destination. There is no public transportation on Sundays. Shortly after leaving the terminal, the bus takes the first left onto a dirt road that runs between Nicoya and Nosara. Once it reaches the small town of Matambú, in the highlands, its residents start to get off one by one.

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