The Order of Physicians strongly criticized this Monday the SNCF's plan to install medical teleconsultation spaces in its stations, advising it instead to “improve rail service to the most isolated territories” to attract health professionals. “The Order of Physicians can only express its very deep concern” about the SNCF's plan to establish teleconsultation spaces in around 300 stations, by 2028.
“This proposal will divert health professionals, who will thus be less available to practice in the most vulnerable territories,” notably predicted the Order of Physicians, which also denounces a new step towards the “financialization” of the health system. The Order “calls much more” on the SNCF to “improve rail service to the most isolated territories, a real challenge for the attractiveness of the territories with regard to the installation of health professionals”, he added .
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SNCF said on Friday it wanted to deploy telemedicine spaces to combat medical deserts in around 300 stations by 2028. These 15 square meter spaces must initially be installed in modular buildings provided by Loxamed, a subsidiary of the Loxam group. (rental of construction equipment). This has designed specialized modules in care, used in particular during the health crisis for screening.
The SNCF indicated that a nurse would always be present on site, and that each patient “will be examined remotely by a doctor practicing on French territory”. Loxamed plans to contact the regional unions of health professionals (URPS) to find nurses and private doctors who will provide teleconsultations.
The doctors' union UFML (French Union for Free Medicine) also strongly denounced the initiative of the SNCF and Loxamed, seeing it as a new example of the development of “very lucrative low-cost medicine” for companies. “There can be no good medicine made from push-button consumption at a distance from a doctor who does not know the patient,” criticized the union.