“Get ready to pay Spaga” by Zahal Levy – The expert opinion on Agerpres.ro – 05.11.2013

“Get ready to pay Spaga” by Zahal Levy – The expert opinion on Agerpres.ro – 05.11.2013

The Ministry of Health, and the CNAS do not have enough money to allow the public hospitals a proper fiscal ending of the year. Or maybe they have, or maybe they don’t, or maybe ….just maybe….

During the week, we could follow conflicting messages and counter messages coming from the press representing the medical leaders. There was not enough money, but then there was, and so on….

Writing this article with cynicism is tempting. As they say “If it was not so sad, it would have been so funny”.

The conflicting information will make us readers smile. But for the patients and their families there will be no smiles at all. On top of the stress that comes with spending time in a hospital, for ourselves or for our relatives, the penniless environment only adds to the medical worries. When our child or mother is in the operating theatre, what we need is a medical service, not to have to pay 100 Ron to ensure the bed sheets are changed and clean. In the end, the medical personnel have fallen victim to the collapsing system. Our envelopes which are filled with insulting gratitude have, for them, become the source of life.There needs to be a closing of the gap between the pathetic salary the statecan pay, and the need of the medical staff to pay their own personal bills. The medical personnel are being abused by the system, and insulted by the need to accept personal contributions from patients and their relatives.

Sad for us all…

Yes there are solutions. I will not analyse here the variety of ways to help the medical system recover, but only remind our Ministers that in every normal country the product that is called PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE is tax deductible. All over the developed world health insurance has been an engine of growth. It was that which saw the success of  private health providers.

Denying us the proper tax relief for Health Insurance condemns us to a life time of suffering. It preserves the disastrous arrangement which is known as  Abonamente (medical package),and which has created a  standstill for the progression of the private health market.

The irony is that the current medical suppliers are clinging on to their poorly managed and devised medical packages. Behind closed doors many medical providers will admit that they can’t make a substantial profit with these packages.

So let’s not re-invent the wheel, but instead learn from the countries we tend to want to emulate, and convince the government to instigate tax relief for Health Insurance. For us it will mean options at any medical clinic or hospital, and for the clinic and hospitals it will mean proper payments that will come from insurance policies, while for the state, it will generate taxes from profits from this industry.

Oh yes one more thing…  In this latter scenario, the envelope “disappears”.

The article was published on Agerpres.ro –  the expert opinion column