President Signs Healthcare Reform Law
(Kyiv, Ukraine) - December 29th, 2017, President Petro Poroshenko signed the healthcare law #6327, which is the primary document managing the reform. A day earlier, the Ukrainian Government approved regulations for the establishment of the National Health Service of Ukraine (NHS). Now it’s official and Ukraine has launched healthcare reform to bring the country’s system up to international standards.
The new law was passed by Parliament on October 19, 2017, and provides for an improved, state healthcare financing model which fights corruption, and provides safe, stable, and guaranteed health care to all citizens. As early as next week, healthcare facilities and local authorities across the country will begin preparations for implementing the first stage of the reform, which is the transformation of primary healthcare. Health reform will be implemented at the level of specialized care (specialist doctors) in 2019, and improvements in the tertiary care system (in-patient hospital care) are scheduled for 2020.
On a practical level, a new, state provided, medical insurance system will become effective in Ukraine in 2018. All healthcare services, medicines, medical treatments, and examinations covered by the new medical insurance program will be paid by state insurance. All citizens will have free access to the full list of these services.
“Some People’s Deputies insist that this is not a ‘real’ insurance, and for Ukrainians, the new system will not be any different from the existing health insurance model. However, the new system allows citizens to know exactly what health services were covered by the state and what amount was paid. Can you ask for quality healthcare at any medical facility in Ukraine today? Well, when health services are covered, you will be able to demand quality care. This system works in Scandinavia, Great Britain, Canada, and Spain. Our key objective is to implement a successful health reform. But achieving this goal will engage all of us. Each and every one of us shall do everything to help implement health reform in 2018” stated Dr. Ulana Suprun, the acting Minister of Health of Ukraine.
Introduction of the National Health Service of Ukraine (NHS)
The Government's decision to approve the Statute on the National Health Service of Ukraine – the national insurer that will enter into contracts with medical facilities, and purchase public healthcare services from them – was crucial to implementing the Health Care Financing Reform in Ukraine (law #6329). The vacancy announcement for the position Director of the NHS is planned for early January, and after a transparent and competitive selection process, the best-qualified candidate will start work in July 2018.
In 2018, the State will use the new model to reimburse general practitioners, pediatricians, and other primary care doctors for a basic package of healthcare services provided by them. Both the new list of primary care services and new requirements for equipment used in primary care practices, have already been approved. For instance, such lists of healthcare services are common in the European countries and include consultations, patient referrals, medical certificates, preventive examinations, primary analysis, and tests. The list of analysis and tests will be gradually expanded.
The government has simplified the procedure for starting a private medical practice
Now healthcare providers in Ukraine only will be able to obtain a license from the Ministry of Health to start their own medical practice in Family Medicine or Pediatrics. This process will take just seven days instead of 30 days under the previous system. However, this is only the first step, as this process shall be simplified even more in the coming years.
In fact, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine now has several key objectives united under one the goal of making a profit. This means that all Ukrainian citizens shall have equal access to quality health care, while all healthcare professionals will demonstrate a high level of professionalism to enjoy fair work conditions and earn a decent income. As a result, this shall improve life expectancy and the quality of life of all citizens of Ukraine.
However, it would be unreasonable to expect immediate changes, since any reform is a systematic process. Nevertheless, the MoH team celebrates this victory for the Ukrainian people, as we begin on a long path towards complex structural changes. The hardest tasks still lie ahead... However, this year we have overcome fierce resistance from the medical mafia, pro-Kremlin lawmakers, and corrupt politicians to make an important step forward and prepare for future reforms.
This societal leap could never be possible without tremendous efforts made thus far by the patient organizations, medical professionals, the Ukrainian Government, Parliament, President and our Western partners, who are have worked tirelessly to ensure that every Ukrainian will soon have an international standard of accessible, available, affordable, and quality health care.
You can continue to make a difference by:
- Following us on Facebook: like our posts and join the conversation to support healthcare reform implementation.
- Forward this newsletter to your friends and family so that they can subscribe to our mailing list for the latest information on healthcare reform in Ukraine
- Follow the Minister of Health on Twitter: like our posts and retweet them. Join the discussion.
- Check our website often for updates on our newly revised website at www.moz.gov.ua
Together we are bringing an international standard of healthcare to Ukraine!
From Your Team at the MOH