In response to a call from the Federation of French-speaking students (Fef) and the Union of French Community Students (Unécof), more than 700 medical students (according to police estimates, the organisers say it was closer to 1,000) met at the Central Brussels station at 1.30pm on Friday. They were at the MR headquarters at 3.30pm, where a delegation spoke to officials.
The students are from different Medical universities in the country, including Namur, Liège, Mons, the ULB and the UCL. They demonstrated in white coats, behind a banner that said “An Inami number for everyone”. “We want all students studying for a Bachelor degree or a Master this year to be given an Inami number when they finish their studies”, says Lorentz Kremer, president of the Liège students Federation’s administration council. The demonstrators are also asking for a revision of the numerus clausus for the end of Master 4. “It is unacceptable that students study for seven years for nothing, they don’t get an Inami number that would let them practice”, adds Brieuc Wathelet, president of the Fef.
“We don’t want Maggie Block to provide the 3,000 lacking Inami numbers today, only to take them away over the next few years. There is a lack of GPs and some specialists. Therefore, these extra Inami numbers have to be given every year, to cover this lack. This means we also have to reopen the debate on numerus clausus”.
The delegation, which left the meeting at around 4.15pm, asked the MR to support their call for an Inami number for all students, and admit there is a lack of doctors. Senator Jacques Brotchi said that reimbursing the Inami numbers over 10 years, as Health Minister Maggie Block has requested, is not possible due to the current lack of doctors.