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New Austerity bill: Generics free of charge for two patients’ categories, but….

Insured in the Greek Public Health Care system are to receive generics mediation without the self-participation of 10 to 15 percent. The change that is to relieve thousands of patients is included in the latest austerity reforms bill expected to be approved by the Palriament on upcoming Thursday. but this is the only positive thing with regards to so-called “reforms in the health sector.” It is highly possible, that the Public Health Care system (EOPYY) will introduce a cap on the amount the organization will have to spend per patient per year.

According to health issues website,the legislation will affect two categories of insured patients.

Those receiving low-pensioners allowance EKAS and their protected family members as well as the chronic ill.

These two categories had already discount in the self-participation, however, they are still paying 10% on the retail price from their own pockets.

The legislation is expected to affect 12-15 percent of  the EOPYY insured, as the EKAS category is estimated at 8% and the chronic ill at 8-10 percent.

The measure is considered as an attempt to increase the use of generics in Greece, even if offering incentives like scraping the self-participation.

Creditors have prescribed to Greece that the use of generics has to reach at least 40% of the total use of medicine by the end of the year.

Ever since the self-participation in the purchase of prescription medicine was imposed in 2012, many low-incomers and low-pensioners were forced to cut on medicine having facing the dilemma: food on the table of medication.

For some chronic ill depending on a cocktail of prescription medication the monthly cost skyrocketed disproportional to their income. Then the ND/PASOK coalition did not take into consideration income criteria, as the German advisers had proposed.

At the same time, the reforms legislation is expecting to cut further expenses in the health sector and for this purpose all insured at EOPYY will have a private record that will include the whole of the cost the Unified Health Security System had spent for the specific patient.

In the government there are thoughts to put a cap on the expenditure per patient. In the past, there were proposals that the cap is set at €1,500 per year per patient, with the possibility to increase this amount for chronic illness and emergencies.

With the cuts in the health sector implemented from the very first bailout in 2010, Greek patients have to dig deeper in their pockets to pay for doctor’s visit, medication, laboratory and other tests or just to avoid waiting for months for a simple test in a public health institution.

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