Penza neurosurgeon expressed concerns about ruble rate to Vladimir Putin
Penza, 18 November 2014. PenzaNews. During the last month, the change of the national currency rate reminds ECG of a patient with acute coronary syndrome in the course of the disease, complicated with arrhythmia and atrial fibrillation, said Mikhail Krasnov, co-chairman of Penza regional headquarters of the Popular Front, Head of Vascular Center in Burdenko Hospital, when asking a question to President Vladimir Putin during the plenary session “Action Forum” in Moscow on Tuesday, November 18.
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“The exchange rate is growing, it’s unpredictable, and it worries us, because today in the Penza region, we are constructing a prenatal center, and in the Russian Federation in the coming years, we will construct and put into operation 32 more prenatal centers,” Mikhail Krasnov said, explaining that each of these facilities should be equipped with high-quality medical equipment, including imported technology.
“The cost of this equipment is tied to the currency rate. This is the first thing. Secondly, as the head of the regional vascular center, I am forced to count money every day. Yesterday, to examine a patient with myocardial infarction or cerebrovascular disturbance and execute angiography, I had to spend 13 thousand rubles for diagnostic medicine and supplies, today it is 18 thousand rubles, and I do not know how much will I need tomorrow, because the exchange rate is unpredictable. I am not an economist, it’s disturbing. It is not clear how to work,” the co-chairman of the regional headquarters of the Popular Front noted.
In his third question, also related to import substitution, Mikhail Krasnov touched on the patients’ rehabilitation.
“We are responsible for what you have treated. [...] Unfortunately, certain expensive drugs cannot be substituted by domestic ones,” Mikhail Krasnov said.
According to him, in these circumstances, the heads of health facilities do not know where to find additional funds.
“I think that immediate actions to protect these vital national projects should be taken, so that prenatal centers are built and work successfully, so that those programs aimed at improving the medical care in the field of vascular diseases, in case of traffic accident, work effectively. These measures are needed immediately. Thank you,” he concluded.
In response, Vladimir Putin stressed that the national currency rate, though regulated by the Central Bank, is a market category, and there will be no attempts to artificially hold or control it.
The Russian President also added that we must take into account one-sided development of domestic economy, which is necessary to be spoken about directly, in his opinion, and also consider the fact that the fall in energy prices puts pressure on the exchange rate of national currency, and it continues to become cheaper in respect to the dollar and euro.
“You have specific problems associated with the industry, where tasks must be accomplished. It is an extremely important area. It deals with health and demography, particularly when it comes to prenatal centers. We have achieved very good results in the field of demography thanks to such professionals like you, thanks to the people who are working in this field for decades, significantly improving their skills. We have considerably changed the situation in terms of equipment and so on. Of course, some of this equipment is purchased abroad, but your colleague has just said that some of the things [Russian-made] are not worse than those imported, and we already have them being produced and sold. But some of our departments, including those working in the area that you represent, prefer to buy expensive imported equipment, which is no better in functionally. In the current situation, we need to look at the problem like businessmen. It means not wasting the money where it is not required by acute need. But if we cannot avoid import, well, then we need to purchase abroad,” Vladimir Putin explained.
At the end of his response, Russian President stressed that none of the programs, similar to those mentioned by Mikhail Krasnov, will be reduced despite budgetary constraints.
“We believe that such fields as health, education and science are not just vital today, but are the main means and methods of economic development. Therefore, we will need to again review what and how should be bought, and what must be developed in our country,” he said.