Nine million fewer appointments registered at Portuguese health centres to October

This is the number of face-to-face appointments lost this year to health centres as a result of the Covid pandemic.

Movimento Saúde em Dia – a movement created by Portugal’s General Medical Council – has compiled its data stressing the crisis “continues to affect thousands of citizens, delaying consultation, surgeries, diagnoses and treatments”.

The worst of it is there is no sign of the situation improving, indeed everything points to further deterioration.

Said Movimento Saúde em Dia in a press statement: “The data doesn’t include the month of November in which authorities gave hospitals the green-light to suspend non-urgent activity. This suggests that by the end of the year, the situation will have become even more acute”.

Broken down, the figures for cancelled ‘awareness campaigns’ – irrespective of the lost doctors’ appointments (6.6 million) and lost appointments with nurses (3.1 million) – have meant that 119,000 mammograms, 81,000 colonoscopies and 99,000 smear tests have simply fallen by the wayside in comparison to the level of care carried out in 2019.