As part of the changes, the officer charged with the administration of the hospital must have a background in medicine, including medical training and experience serving as a doctor. The position of GATA administrator has long been filled by senior military officers who are not doctors.
GATA often receives harsh criticism because its administrator and senior staff are officers of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) who do not have medical training. The hospital hopes to bring an end to such criticism with the planned changes.
Additionally, the GATA administrator will no longer be an appointed major general; instead, the administrator will be selected from a list of qualified brigadier generals. The hospital also plans to hire more doctors as around 20 recently quit their positions at GATA.
News sources say the GATA administration has planned these structural changes in order to restore the hospital's popularity. GATA became the subject of criticism for admitting as patients several former generals indicted in the trial of Ergenekon, a clandestine criminal network accused of working to topple the government. Critics allege GATA admitted these ex-generals solely to save them from jail time during the trial and, ultimately, to find them medically unfit to stand trial.