Dr. Cecil Vella writes to The Times - Editor apologizes - 29/7/2005

link to article in The TIMES

Serving the patient (2)
Cecil Vella, lecturer and consultant paediatrician, Department of Paediatrics, St Luke's Hospital, Guardamangia.

The editorial of July 20 is an insult to the many dedicated, hard-working and fully-qualified consultants who work in the Health Division and have done so for many years. They too have credentials and abilities beyond doubt and show absolute loyalty to their patients. Whether they work in private practice or not is their choice.

Many, like myself, do so to afford a decent lifestyle. Should the Health Division offer a full-time contract with decent pay I would be the first to accept. The excuse of private practice has been used time and time again, ad nauseum.

The implication that consultants in the Health Division are monkeys as they earn peanuts is, to say the least, offensive. Should the editor of this newspaper ever require hospital treatment he would be advised to bring along some nuts. Top specialists and consultants are easy to come by in Malta but not easy to keep unless decent pay packages are offered to them as soon as possible.

Editorial note: As we have already pointed out the use of the expression paying peanuts and getting monkeys was in no way meant to offend and/or insult the many dedicated and loyal medical practitioners in the national health service. It was merely used to press the point that in order to get the best possible material one has to pay good money. Any offence is regretted.

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