Owners and employees of private hospitals in Lebanon protest outside the Health Ministry in Beirut, June 21, 2019. (The Daily Star/NNA, HO)
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Owners and employees of private hospitals in Lebanon Friday protested outside the Health Ministry to demand that the state pay back an estimated $1.3 billion it owes them to help prevent a further decline in the health care services the hospitals are able to offer.Speaking at the protest, the head of the Syndicate of Private Hospitals, Suleiman Haroun, noted the "huge" debt owed to the private hospitals by the government and public bodies such as the National Social Security Fund and military health funds, some of which date back "many years". Lebanon has 121 private hospitals with 12,578 beds, and 32 public hospitals with 2,653 beds – a split of roughly 4 to 1, private to public.
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