Don’t Make Patients Pay the Price for Lacking Healthcare

Target: Emmanuel Macron, President of France

Goal: Ensure reforms made to French healthcare system are benefitting patients.

In response to complaints about deficiencies in the French healthcare system, the nation’s leaders have proposed a number of controversial measures. One proposal would impose a financial penalty on individuals who do not show up for scheduled doctor’s appointments or who fail to provide adequate 24-hour notice. Another measure would allow patients to bypass general practitioners and consult directly with specialists. And the third measure –perhaps the most contested – would set forward a pathway for patients with incurable and painful diseases to seek medical assistance in ending their lives.

Each proposal has been blasted by critics who contend none of the efforts will rectify the main problem: a shortage of qualified physicians currently practicing in the country. In addition, critics argue, the proposed penalty could put an undue, unfair financial burden on individuals. And the proposed physician-assisted suicide effort would strike another blow to chronically underfunded palliative care in France.

Sign the petition below to urge leaders to consult more broadly with physicians and to reevaluate political maneuvers that could worsen rather than ease the country’s healthcare woes.


Dear President Macron,

You recently expressed hopes to increase the number of physicians vetted for medical practice. These aspirations will not address critical shortages that are harming patient care now. Punishing the patients who rely on medical services with fines for absenteeism certainly will do nothing to lessen the burden of the citizenry. Neither will attempting to cut general practitioners (the physicians whom patients arguably trust most) out of critical care decisions.

Further, while the issue of physician-assisted suicide is one that should be addressed, it should not come at the expense of supporting and funding palliative care. Members of the medical community have expressed concerns about each proposal put forward. Please listen to them, gather a strong task force of experts ready for open dialogue, and help develop a robust long-term plan by consensus that will help make the French healthcare system a standard for Europe and for the world.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Esranur Kalay

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219 Signatures

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