At the AmCham Business Breakfast, economists and experts in healthcare policies agreed that cases from abroad should be examined and used to address the issues in the Slovenian healthcare system to find solutions for keeping it sustainable, accessible and solidarity-based.
Economist Igor Masten noted that analyses of the Slovenian healthcare system pointed to several issues, with the lack of funds being one of the most pressing ones. According to him, a solution is not to raise the contribution rate for mandatory health insurance, but reduce the underinsurance of population by making legislative changes which would give a greater role to private insurance companies.
Rudy Douven, health economist at the Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis, said that his country had decided for a change of the healthcare system in a similar way ten years ago. The state set a clearly defined framework for a system of regulated competition, he added. Insurance companies were given more power and hospitals were given more autonomy, with the idea being that insurers compete for clients and hospitals for insurers. "The state provides a framework, while the partners who talk are hospitals and insurers."
Igor Schoonbrood, enterprise architect at Maastricht University Medical Center, said that competition was allowed to a great extent but that it was nevertheless precisely regulated by the state. The transition was not simple, because it was not only about business changes in healthcare institutions, but also about changes in culture. "Change is not possible overnight, you have to constantly talk with all healthcare workers."
Igor Masten about the problems of financing the healtcare system
Igor Schoonbrood: We must run hospitals as companies
Rudy Douven about the reform of the Dutch healthcare system
More on our Slovenian site.
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