The union of family medicine doctors Praktikum strongly reacted to the idea of raising the threshold for defining patients. “We have to ask ourselves, what do we want as a society? We now have a poorly accessible assembly line in family medicine,” they emphasized.
They were upset by the recent statement of the director general of the Slovenian Health Insurance Institute (ZZZS) that several doctors have defined patients above the head tax rate of 1895 and despite this, they provide high-quality services. So, they say, they are once again faced with the idea that family medicine doctors should raise the standard for defining patients according to the equation of population divided by number of doctors.
“ZZZS and a few actors who have successfully destroyed interest in family medicine in the past would like to gain the status of putting the last nail in the coffin of public primary health care in any way possible. This time they are referring to their own imagination, that it is possible to provide high-quality services even with a higher head fee,” they wrote in the press release.
“It takes time for the patient”
They added the comparison that even surgeons can amputate the limbs of all injured people who come to them in a quality and professional manner. “There is only one problem that ZZZS cannot internalize in its moment of bureaucratic inertia. Both the injured and the surgeons would rather see their injured limbs preserved rather than amputated. But that takes time“, they added and emphasized that it is similar in family medicine as well.
They want relief with additional staff so that we can at least become a well-accessible conveyor belt where everyone gets fast, general and satisfactory health care. “However, if we want to turn general medicine into real family medicine, we have to go beyond the logic of the assembly line. And this is only possible by lowering the tax rates,” they are convinced. This alone would enable doctors to develop a partnership with the patient.
At the same time, they warn that this is only the tip of the overlooked iceberg of unaddressed problems of patients, such as mental disorders, addictions and harmful habits: “And how many of the more complex and sensitive problems can even be adequately treated in an outpatient clinic that operates on a conveyor belt? Because it is one thing to recognize hardships and problems, and another thing is to obtain the consent of the patient for their proper care. For such consent, the patient needs a confidential relationship, time and the feeling that he is entering a safe space with his problem, where he will be treated as a person and not as a product on a production line.“
They submitted their solutions to the strategic council
Family doctors have, as they say, developed solutions that will stabilize and strengthen family medicine. They have been handed over to the strategic council and enjoy the support of all the major medical organizations.