Discuss as:

Greek health system crumbles under weight of crisis

Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

An Orthodox monk waits to be examined inside a medical center which has been set up by volunteers at the headquarters of the Athens Medical Association with the help of the Greek Orthodox Church in Athens on May 25, 2012.

Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

Patients ask for help inside a Doctors of the World medical center in Athens on May 31, 2012.

Reuters reports — Greece's rundown state hospitals are cutting off vital drugs, limiting non-urgent operations and rationing even basic medical materials for exhausted doctors as a combination of economic crisis and political stalemate strangle health funding.

"It's a matter of life and death for us," said Persefoni Mitta, head of the Cancer Patients' Association, recounting the dozens of calls she gets a day from Greeks needing pricey, hard-to-find cancer drugs. "Why are they depriving us of life?" Read the full story.

Related content: 

Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

Patients wait outside a medical center run by the Greek delegation of Doctors of the World in Athens on May 31, 2012.

Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

Patients wait in front of a Doctors of the World medical center in Athens on May 31, 2012.

Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

A volunteer checks medicines which have been donated by people inside a makeshift pharmacy at a medical center set up by volunteers in the Helliniko suburb of Athens on May 24, 2012.

Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

A pediatrician examines a girl inside a social medical center in the Helliniko suburb of Athens on May 24, 2012.