• Mónica García: "Politics that does not go hand in hand with scientific evidence is not political, it is charlatanism"

The Minister of Health, Mónica García, has been open to including the unemployed and people over 65 years of age in the Oral Health Plan, which so far includes pregnant women, children up to 14 years of age, head and neck cancer patients, adults with intellectual disabilities and people with neuromuscular diseases.

"As oral health is now more of a pyrrhic part of public health, what we want is for it to be an important part of the portfolio of services. The other day I was talking about the over-65s, but I can also talk about the unemployed or the people who are most vulnerable," said García, in a statement to the media on Monday, before an informative breakfast that took place at the Ateneo de Madrid with the secretary general of CCOO. Unai Sordo.

However, the Minister of Health has highlighted the fact that the Government has recently given a push to this issue. On 30 October, the Council of Ministers approved a transfer of 68 million euros to the autonomous communities to comply with the Oral Health Plan already in place, and to improve benefits for 13 million citizens.

With this second year,coverage was extended to the age groups of 0 to 14 years, groups with disabilities and those diagnosed with cancer. The plan already included preventive actions (mouth cleaning) and specific care for pregnant women.

In addition, the minister insisted that at the moment her priorities are "the universality of the system, which was lost in 2012, strengthening Primary Care, which is mortally wounded, and taking care of health professionals".

Asked about mental health, García opted for an agreement "with other ministries" to address the influence of social determinants in this aspect. "We have to make sure that there is no inequality, that there are good jobs, and we have to take care of the youth. It is a multidisciplinary approach to take care of mental health, so we will have to agree with other ministries and with society to say that we have a mental health problem and it must be addressed from many places," he said.