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Ombudsman calls Law on Financing of Health Care «total failure»

Juris Jansons/flickr.com.
The Law on Financing of Health Care adopted by the 12th Saeima and which provides two different state guaranteed healthcare service levels is «a total failure», said ombudsman Juris Jansons in an interview to 900 seconds LNT.

According to him, although the name of the law mentions financing of health care, in reality the document mentions nothing regarding any sort of financing. «There are two baskets – the small one and the large one. And this is completely wrong. Does it [the law] resolve the issue of healthcare accessibility? Most definitely not!» said Jansons.

The ombudsman explained that this law is especially unfair towards micro-enterprise tax payers in the country. «Often it turns out that they [micro-enterprise tax payers] pay more taxes than part-time workers,» explains Jansons, adding that in this case recipients of minimal wages will receive the ‘big’ basket of healthcare services even if they paid no more than one euro in taxes.

According to the ombudsman, this fight against tax avoiders could cause more harm than good for the country. «Tax avoiders should be approached from a completely different perspective,» said Jansons.

As previously reported, in search of additional funding for healthcare, Latvia’s government adopted the Law on Financing of Health Care. This law details the decision on implementation of state health insurance.

The law provides that starting next year healthcare reception for residents is tied to payment of social fees. This means all residents are eligible for a minimum of healthcare services, whereas a full spectrum of services depends on whether or not a resident is insured.

Healthcare Minister Anda Čakša has previously said that plans to halt the law could create risks for doctors and patients.

She reminded that she has always been a supporter of comprehensive healthcare and has fought for her views for one and a half years when she understood that the only way to secure money for healthcare would be through compromise. This compromise in the law was explained as the practice of tying healthcare services with social fees.


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