Greeks pay for economic crisis with their health | World news | The Guardian
Many, like the unemployed diabetic man he has just examined, have gone without treatment for several days. “When you see a diabetic unable to afford his insulin you know he is going to die,” says Samarkos. “There is no infrastructure to help these people. On every front the system has failed the people it was meant to serve.”
Greeks are paying for their economic disaster with their health, according to a new study.
The impact of cuts on drugs services appears particularly troubling. HIV infections rose significantly in 2010, with injecting drug users accounting for half of the rise. The numbers are on course to rise by 52% this year. Many new infections are also linked to rises in prostitution and unsafe sex. Heroin use reportedly rose by 20% in 2009, according to estimates from the Greek Documentation and Monitoring Centre for Drugs. Budget cuts in 2009 and 2010 have meant the loss of a third of the country’s outreach programmes.