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Latvian Healthcare Minister promises to slash queues for healthcare services by half

Anda Čakša/play24.
With a major increase in funding it will be possible to reduce queues for healthcare services by half, Latvian Healthcare Minister Anda Čakša promised to Rīta panorama programme.

The politician says that 2017 has been a turning point for Latvia’s healthcare – the government has dramatically changed its views towards healthcare and has secured a nearly EUR 200 million increase for the healthcare budget.

As for the Healthcare Funding Law, Čakša mentioned that the proportion of residents that may end up without state-funded healthcare services is ‘very small’. From the perspective of the general division of services covered by the budget, the law is very loyal to Latvian residents. Still, it does motivate responsible payment of taxes, added the minister.

Healthcare Ministry intends to continue talks with family doctors in regards to possible improvements of offered services and try to speed up the switch of generations, which can be pulled off using support from structure funds and paying benefits to doctors leaving their posts. Attempts will also be made to search for stimuli to motivate family doctors to work in countryside regions, which are traditionally less profitable.

Čakša also said she noticed certain improvements in e-health system. She added that it was ‘a heavy heritage’ and that it was not easy to learn how to use this system.

As for Riga Eastern Clinical University Hospital and Stradins Clinical University Hospital – there are no plans to merge them next year. Instead the government will think of a way to deepen their cooperation.


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