Last day of February in a village in Lamia, Central Greece: Passersby are shocked to see an elderly man and a woman sitting on the ground of a land plot. they beaver form cold and are unable to stand on their feet. They are just sitting there, on the bare soil, next to their old house. The neighbors rush to bring blankets and water and call the emergency service. What had happened?
The elderly, a brother and his sister, had arrived to their village in Lamia in Central Greece after they were released from the state hospital for mental ill “Dafni” in Athens, 300 km away. As their home was sealed by the municipality and judicial authorities, they had nowhere else to go except to sit down on the cold grass of the land plot…
According to local LamiaReport.gr, the elderly were scavengers living for several years in a home without electricity and water and in appalling conditions.
Two months ago, justice intervened, sealed the house and sent the couple to Dafni.
With the new health care and Troika-imposed reform, Dafni has to release patients after a short period of time. According to LamiaReport, the couple was released from Dafni on Thursday.
It is not clear why they were sent to a mental ill hospital and not to an elderly nursery home for poor.
But in Greece of strict austerity and a social state in collapse, taking someone to mental ill hospital is the easy bureaucratic way to get rid of humans at the end of their lives.Furthermore the latest “reforms in health care” foresee that mentally ill patients are to be released form the psychiatric units regardless of their conditions.
“Mentally ill patients will stay maximum three months in the hospitals’ psychiatric units and be released regardless of their condition.
There is the option of a three-month extension but without further extension of even one day.
The health minister’s theoretical plan foresees that these patients can be relocated to specialized hostels or boarding houses or return to their homes. The transfer of 400 chronic ill psychiatry patients will have to be concluded by 31.12.2013.”(KeepTalkingGreece on Nov 25/2013)
The case triggered an outcry in the local society and many criticized the church for failing to help these people.
PS A kick in the ass of those who have nothing to offer to the society, are unable to take care of themselves and do not even have a pension. Shame on you, Greece!
i would have to ask where was the church,relatives or neighbours when this happened?? of course this does not excuse the states responsibility in this case
they were caught by surprise …
I think is it disgusting that the elderly after normally working most of their lives have to live like this. I am English living in a country in which I used to adore and I am finding it so hard to believe my eyes and ears. Every day I see and hear about how the Greek state is letting it’s citizens down in the worst possible way yet it is still expecting them to pay huge taxes etc etc for the services which they are obviously not receiving. I myself am working and contribute to IKA at an amount close to 400Euros per month yet when I need medical treatment, prescriptions blood tests, scans I have to pay and “hope” to claim it back. Is it me or is something seriously wrong somewhere. I may as well work black and pay for private medical insurance… The government do not make it easy for people to be honest.
that’s the impact of IMF imposed austerity. No, the don’t want honest people because they are unhonest themselves and considere the society as such as well.