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Health Minister Resigns after Scandals Rock Romania | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Protesters hold banners reading “Corruption kills” during a rally in Bucharest. Reuters

Romania’s health minister resigned on Monday amid public outrage over the use of sub-standard disinfectants in dozens of Romanian hospitals and the death of three babies from a mysterious infection.

Health Minister Patriciu Achimas-Cadariu resigned after authorities announced a probe into how the disinfectant was used at 50 hospitals.

Authorities on Saturday conducted searches at hospitals and the offices of drug company Hexi Pharma, which reportedly supplied dozens of hospitals with the disinfectant for use on surfaces and hands.

Police took away documents and samples from 25 hospitals, where tests revealed there were problems with the disinfectant.

According to media reports, the disinfectants were greatly diluted, making them ineffective, and were also overpriced.

About 500 people protested Friday in Bucharest over the latest scandal to hit the underfunded health care system. Thousands of medics emigrate annually and bribery and informal payments are rife in the system.

Romania is perceived as one of the European Union’s most corrupt states.

This latest scandal comes just three months after scores of babies were hospitalized, and three of them died, suffering from an infection the cause of which has never been determined.