Hospital debts repaid from EU Presidency savings

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On Thursday the Latvian parliament supported the motion to direct €5.7m from the funds earmarked but not spent on Latvia's EU Presidency towards covering state-guaranteed 2015 debts for 11 healthcare institutions, reported LSM's Latvian-language service.

The largest sum – more than €2m was required by the Rīga Stradiņš Hospital, while €1.7m was directed to cover the debts of the Austrumu hospital. Other hospitals received smaller sums.

The state-guaranteed loans had been granted to medical institutions based on development business plans implemented by hospitals within the framework of the European Regional Development Fund, reported BNS.

The Health Ministry told BNS that financing allocated to medical institutions had been insufficient for ensuring the necessary health care services due to cuts made during the crisis years, and funds had been allocated without regard to the actual scope of services the hospitals are providing.

The ministry said that by making payments of the state-guaranteed loans in 2015, the financial burden on hospitals will be reduced and they are more likely to be able to ensure full repayment of the loans.

Several Latvian hospitals had run out of quotas for state-paid medical services, and waiting lists for numerous check ups and services had formed until the end of the year.

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