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Northern citizens want help with their Ob-Gyn shortage

Date Posted: 2009-10-29

Okinawa Prefecture’s own hospital in northern Okinawa has a shortage of doctors, with only two obstetricians and gynecologists serving the community.

Citizens and doctors have been meeting, studying “what we can do to protect mothers and children’s lives.” Doctors were joined by Nago City staff to evaluate ways to attract more medical doctors to the sparsely populated northern region.

“There is no system to support doctors, or guarantees,” says Doctor Mariko Oshiro, one of the two doctors serving at the Okinawa Prefecture Northern Hospital, “If a doctor wants to stay a long time in this hospital, he or she can, but how do people work without a good working environment?” Doctor Oshiro posed an idea to area residents and Nago City officials ”To make an easy environment for the doctors, I have an idea! What do you think about investing in doctors for our hospital, by municipalities?” She said “If each municipality will support a doctor, it will be easy to get doctors.”

Another participant suggested “we go out and ask for donations to the hospital. I think we can gain support like that, and each person can think up more ways to support the hospital.” One woman echoed the thought, noting “there are many ways to support a hospital.” The meeting was initially organized by the women’s representative group network committee, and held at the central community center.

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