Greece crisis: Cancer patients suffer as health system fails

6 September 2015

After arriving at the Theageneio specialist cancer hospital in Thessaloniki, Betty Semakoula was distraught to learn that her CAT scan was not going to happen that day.

“The machine is not working,” hospital staff told her.
“You should come back in four months.”
But Betty did not have that long.

“I had no choice but to get a private screening,” she said. “I paid €600 (£390) out of my own pocket.”

The 35-year-old, who founded an NGO that helps poor and homeless people in Thessaloniki, says her experiences suggest Greece’s health system is increasing comparable to those she witnessed while working in the developing world – rather than that of an EU country.