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Pirc Musar on healthcare reform: Rushing without discussions and unification would not bring results



Healthcare is also a priority of the current government, but the preparation and implementation of measures is becoming more and more complicated

The President of the Republic, Nataša Pirc Musar, convened the first forum dedicated to healthcare. As she emphasized in her opening speech, consensus must be sought on strategically important topics that cannot be implemented in one mandate.

President of the Republic Nataša Pirc Musar opened its first health forum in Brdo pri Kranje, where experts in the field of health, politics and representatives of civil society talk about the financing of the health system, efficient organization and management of health care, and rationalization.

In her opening address, she emphasized, among other things, that in areas that are related to strategically important topics for the future of Slovenia and that are almost impossible to arrange in one mandate, “seek social and national consensus”. “Well-designed policies and projects must be continued regardless of which political option is in power,” she emphasized and added that she will strive to create a consensus in the areas she considers to be key for the development and social cohesion of the country.

One of those areas is health care, where consensus needs to be reached,”how to ensure timely, high-quality and accessible healthcare for everyone in the public healthcare system”. “At the same time, I expect that the violation of the human rights of citizens who do not have regular access to healthcare services or a personal doctor will be resolved as soon as possible,” she warned, adding that she is aware that we need a comprehensive health reform, which she is involved in “many open questions”.

She asked the participants in the forum to indicate both short-term solutions that could be implemented immediately, and long-term solutions that first require consensus and then time for implementation. “Please also highlight the reserves in the system that could and should be activated immediately,” she added. She emphasized the quality and safety of patient treatment as one of the key areas: “This is an area where it is imperative to unify positions and start introducing all the measures that lead to greater safety for patients and greater quality of patient treatment. The Ministry of Health is a key factor here.”

“Rush without discussions and unification would not bring the expected results”

“We all agree that we need to ensure a strong public health system, supplemented by concessionaires and private individuals. We have been waiting for reforms for more than thirty years, so rushing without discussions and unification would not bring the expected results,” said the president at the opening of the forum, stressing the importance of cooperation, both in healthcare itself and with decision-makers.

She reminded that health reform is also necessary due to demographic indicators, “support in public opinion polls gives the preparers an additional incentive and at the same time is a great responsibility, because health is the value that we all place in one of the first places among the values ​​that we value the most”.

A health worker.  Photo: BoBo

Three thematic sections of the forum

The forum program is divided into three main thematic sections. In addition to the Minister of Health Danijela Bešič Loredan prominent experts in the field of healthcare, politics and representatives of civil society will participate in the forum, who will jointly discuss current topics in the field of healthcare and propose solutions to improve the situation.

Professor at the Faculty of Economics in Ljubljana Mitja Čok and Petra Došenović Bonča will talk about healthcare expenditures in Slovenia from the point of view of public finances and collective and private financing of healthcare services. Head of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the Medical Faculty of Ljubljana Alojz Ihan will talk about what the public expects and what (can) get from public healthcare.

The expert director of the National Institute of Public Health will speak about the capacity of health activities Ivan Erženand the general director of the Institute for Health Insurance of Slovenia will speak about the risks to the health care system and society Tatjana Mlakar.

The government is getting more and more complicated in the preparation and implementation of measures

Regulating and reforming Slovenian healthcare has also been set as a priority by the ruling policy, but the preparation and implementation of measures are getting more and more complicated, Radio Slovenija reported Snežana Ilijaš. The Ministry of Health has so far implemented two more important measures, clinics for the undefined to increase access to family doctors and unlimited payment for all services to reduce waiting times. But the results are not encouraging for now, warns an international consultant for health systems Dorjan Marušič: “We throw in money. And what happened? Waiting times have increased. And not only that…let’s do it all over again in a few years. We’re throwing money out the window.”

Marušič believes that “we are dealing with the wrong things” – first of all, in his opinion, it is necessary to reorganize the health network, which has been practically unchanged for almost 80 years, to maintain the primary level as the foundation of our system and to determine the basket of rights, and this before changing the sources of financing: “It doesn’t matter if we first determine the means and then the basket, that is, first determine the blanket, and then lie down and try to cover ourselves with it. Or if we first determine the basket and cover it with public funds. What we will determine , that it is a public priority, we must cover it with public funds.”

But public funds are already very limited. We do not have long-term sustainability, and expenses will increase even more due to demographic reasons, and we should be aware of this even when supplementary insurance is abolished, warned the economist on Monday in the Studio at 5:00 p.m. Dušan Mramor: “If you are in this position, as we are, you have to walk extremely carefully, with a feeling for every measure you take.”

And in such a situation, the salary reform does not open, Mramor points out: “When you start negotiating wages, it’s like a pressure cooker, when he lifts the lid – it’s just going to fly out.”

Source: Rtvslo

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