Saeima passes new health insurance system bill

Take note – story published 6 years and 6 months ago

Saeima passed the Healthcare Financing Law in the final reading on December 14, paving the way for the launch of a state mandatory health insurance system.

The Healthcare Financing Law was adopted by 70 votes to 16.

The government-funded healthcare minimum, which will be provided to all residents of Latvia regardless of the size of their social tax payments, includes emergency medical assistance, obstetrician's services, family physician's services, as well as government-funded medications and medical equipment.

The government-funded healthcare minimum will also include treatment of patients whose illnesses pose threat to public health, such as mental disorders and tuberculosis.

To receive the full basket of government-funded healthcare services, patients will need mandatory health insurance policies.

According to the Healthcare Financing Law, the full basket of healthcare services will be provided to those persons who have been socially insured in line with the Law on State Social Insurance, as well as persons under state protection who have been making health insurance contributions.

The state will provide health insurance to certain groups of people, like children, orphans, officially unemployed persons, organ donors, persons whose health has suffered as a result of participation in the rescue works following the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, pensioners, victims of Soviet-time political reprisals and members of national resistance, among others.

The amount of social contributions will be 1 percent of the minimum monthly wage next year, which will further increase to 3% in 2019 and 5% in 2020.

Since the minimum monthly wage will increase to €430 next year, the monthly health insurance contribution will be €4.3. In two years' time it will rise to €21.5 a month unless the minimum wage is raised again.

Under the Healthcare Financing Law, Latvia's health budget has to reach 4% of GDP by 2020. 

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