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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

The legal dispute for doctors outside the NHS, the reactions and… the double door

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The ongoing legal dispute between the doctors who have not joined the General Health System (GeSY) and the Organization brought to the fore again the complaints against the Health Insurance Organization (OHI) regarding efforts to create a multi-insurance health system, with the Auditor General, Odysseas Michaelidis, and the president of EDEK, Marino Sizopoulos, opening fire on those involved.

The judicial process  seems that it will not be a simple affair and it is expected that it will be time-consuming, since in essence the District Court is called upon to rule on the legality of the circular, which provides for the removal of non-GeSy doctors from the hospitals. Something that has been put into effect since today, despite the ongoing procedures, with the OAU having since yesterday sent a relevant announcement to the hospitals, giving them strict instructions to comply, with the approximately twenty affected doctors having to look for a new roof, despite their strong protest.

The fact that non-GeSy doctors will be removed from the hospitals did not leave Marinos Sizopoulos unoccupied, who even felt justified and spoke of provisions contrary to the legislation, which creates two-tier patients, while he noted that non-GeSy doctors must to leave immediately. Specifically, the president of EDEK, in his statements, said that he had indicated from the first moment that the memorandum, which was signed in February 2020, for the inclusion of private hospitals in the NHS by the OAU, had provisions which were against the law.

As he said, “EDEK considers that it is immediately imperative for the competent services – both state and OAH to proceed with full harmonization with the written legislation” and emphasized that “non-GeSy doctors must leave immediately and go somewhere else. It is not possible to have two measures and two stations at the same time  to create two-speed patients, i.e. the beneficiaries who will have immediate service and many times outside the single insurance system”. who seized the opportunity and criticized the Organization, noting through his post on social media that “it is wasting time by allowing hospitals, the double door in a way of multi-insurance”.

He also mentioned that the Audit Service highlighted the relevant illegality, as he called it, from July 15, 2020, since “it was against the basic principle of the law for a universal system that will provide everyone with equal treatment”.

The Organization may not have wanted to respond to the relevant accusations, however the affected doctors did not leave the points unanswered, with Dr. Savvas Kadi, who is one of the private doctors who offer their services in a hospital of the General Health System, stating how, if someone studies what multi-insurance means, he will draw his own conclusions, while at the same time he emphasized the need created by the procedure before the Court to extend the circular, since their patients will remain in limbo until the decision.

< p>Specifically, Dr. Kadis  emphasized that the institution of the Auditor General is respected, nevertheless he explained that “a multi-insurance system means that someone has the right to be officially insured through the system by various other organizations. This thing is not going to happen, since we have a single insurance system, which has indeed taken root. It is the system that has been decided by our country, but it was supported both by those of us who are outside GeSY, and by our colleagues who are inside the system”.

He pointed out, in fact, that the OAU remains the only Organization that insures the beneficiaries, and clarified that, “there will be no multi-insurance, because twenty doctors will continue to practice medicine, according to what they have agreed through the memorandum that they had signed with the former Minister of Health and the OAU, which allowed us to do our work. This is how our hospitals entered the NHS and now they are throwing us in the waste bin. No action has been taken to honor these signatures. A big moral issue is also raised for the future, for those who will have future cooperation with the state, for what the signing with a minister ultimately means”.

Regarding the reports of two-speed patients and doctors taking advantage of the system, Dr. Kadis said that anyone who has such complaints in front of him must provide information to the OAU and the Police. “We cannot demonize health workers by talking about theories”.

At the same time, the doctors outside the NHS request the extension of the circular until the decision of the Court, in order to give their patients time to be informed, since as explained by  Dr. Kadis, are expected to be affected and suffer.

The above discussions have been repeated for years, however the legality of the ban is now before the Court, with the new trial scheduled for three weeks and specifically on November 24, the date on which the lawyers representing the OAU and Hippocrates will submit their positions. 

Legal circles, however, comment that the process will be time-consuming, since it is possible that there will be postponements until the final decision by the Court, just as they also do not rule out that the Legal Service may also be called to testify before the Court, given that the relevant circular was drawn up after an opinion requested by the Minister of Health, from the Attorney General.

However, regarding the possibility of extending the circular until the decision, both the Ministry of Health and OAU remain vertical to the validity of the existing legislation and welfare such as this or has been sent to the infirmaries.

Source: www.reporter.com.cy

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