Minister of Health Vlastimil Válek, December 19, 2022.
Prague – The Ministry of Health is looking for a way to limit the overuse of emergency services and emergency services. There is discussion about the amount of payments for non-acute patients and the way to determine such patients, changes are not yet on the table. The ministry announced this to ČTK and emphasized that it is not planning to return to flat fees. According to the Minister of Health Vlastimil Válk (TOP 09), the changes must improve the availability of care.
People currently pay 90 crowns for using medical and dental emergency services, typically at night or on weekends. In an interview for today's Young Front Dnes (MfD), Válek said that regulation is also needed on emergency medical facilities that people overuse. According to him, the possibility that doctors on admission decide who should pay is unacceptable. He could imagine that the patient would pay for not going to the practitioner first, but directly to the medical facility, he pointed out.
The overload of emergency admissions worsens the availability of care for patients with truly acute problems, the department said in a press release. The issue is being discussed professionally. “This discussion is conducted not only on the amount of fees, but also on the distinction between persons who come with an acute and non-acute problem. With regard to the complexity of this issue, the discussion is now primarily conducted on the feasibility of such changes, and possible changes are not yet on the table,” the ministry added.
Válek stated that his statement to MfD was a comment on the current professional discussion on this topic. According to him, the goal of the changes is to reduce patient waiting times. “I will allow any potential changes in this area only when it becomes clear that they would increase the availability of medical care,” the minister emphasized. 30 crowns, 60 crowns per day in the hospital and 90 crowns for the emergency room. The individual fees then changed over time and disappeared. For the last time, since January 2015, the obligation to pay 30 kroner fees in ambulances and pharmacies has been abolished. That left only a fee of 90 crowns at the emergency room.