Health
Research insight
January 4, 2021

License to Kill? The Impact of Hospital Strikes

Between 2012 and 2018, Portugal recorded 127 hospital strikes, in a total of 268 days of strike, with estimating negative impacts on the mortality rate and surgical activity. These data come from a study by Eduardo Costa, from Nova SBE Health Economics & Management Knowledge Center, entitled License to kill? The impact of hospital strikes.

One of the study’s conclusions remarked that in Portugal hospital strikes are “very short”, as they usually are shorter than three days but, in contrast, are “more frequent” than in other countries. The research work, still in progress, also points out a reduction in surgical activity in hospitals, especially during the doctors and nurses’ strike. Patients already admitted to the hospital “tend to stay in hospitals longer” when nurses' strikes occur. At the hospital level, results suggest a reduction in the admission of patients to hospitals during hospital strikes, with an incidence in outpatient cases

Eduardo Costa's research was the subject of a seminar organized by the Centro de Investigação em Saúde Pública, in collaboration with the Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública.

Eduardo Costa

PhD Candidate in Economics

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