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CyprusHealth

Parties given outline of NHS

The health ministry on Tuesday gave parliamentary political parties the draft bill on the implementation of the National Health Scheme (NHS) for which the goal is to be up and running by 2019.

According to state broadcaster CyBC, the bill provides for the operation of the NHS through the Health Insurance Organisation (HIO) and the rights and obligations of health professionals and patients.

According the bill, the funds for the NHS will come from contributions of the insured, but no further information is provided as to the percentages paid by employees, employers, the self-employed and pensioners. The maximum amount for calculating contributions is set at €150,000.

Private sector specialist doctors, according to the bill, will be able to sign up as family doctors – or general practitioners (GPs) if they are given the green light by the health ministry. Every GP will not be allowed to have more than 2,500 patients it their lists.

The insured will be able to choose their GP following the approval of the HIO and will be able to change their personal doctor every six months.

Insured persons, the bill stipulates, can have the right to go directly to a specialist without a referral from their GP. The same applies for dentists.

Last month, political leaders reached a consensus during a meeting with President Nicos Anastasiades as to how to proceed with the NHS. They were also presented with the government’s proposal which includes a road map for the implementation of the NHS. The meeting was part of the president’s initiative to speed up the implementation of a health system.

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