October 25, 2012 by nbgarrett
With the anticipation of baby boy number 2 coming any day now (YAY), this article from 2009 struck my nerve with a little extra pain. It demonstrates one major example of the corruption that has burrowed deep inside the hearts
of the Romanian people.
“BUCHAREST, Romania – Alina Lungu, 30, said she did everything necessary to ensure a healthy pregnancy in Romania: she ate organic food, swam daily and bribed her gynecologist with an extra $255 in cash, paid in monthly
installments handed over discreetly in white envelopes.
She paid a nurse about $32 extra to guarantee an epidural and even gave about $13 to the orderly to make sure he did not drop the stretcher.
But on the day of her delivery, she said, her gynecologist never arrived. Twelve hours into labor, she was left alone in her room for an hour. A doctor finally appeared and found that the umbilical cord was wrapped twice
around her baby’s neck and had nearly suffocated him. He was born blind and deaf and is severely brain damaged.
Now, Alina and her husband, Ionut, despair that the bribes they paid were not enough to prevent the negligence that they say harmed their son, Sebastian. “Doctors are so used to getting bribes in Romania that you now have to pay more in order to even get their attention,” she said.
Romania, a poor Balkan country of 22 million that joined the European Union two years ago, is struggling to shed a culture of corruption that was honed during decades of Communism, when Romanians endured long lines just to get
basics like eggs and milk and used bribes to acquire scarce products and services.” Read the rest of the article here: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/09/world/europe/09bribery.html?ref=romania&_r=0