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Refund for tests in diagnostic centers is”illegal”, says Health Minister

The dispute between the private diagnostic centers and the Health Ministry took a new turn after Minister Andreas Xanthos described as “illegal” the centers’ procedure to demand that insured patients pay 85% of the bill from their own pockets and claim refund by the National Health Insurance Fund EOPYY.

He offered that insured can seek public hospitals and other health care facilities for tests “without appointment” or financial burden.

For insured patients the confusion is now perfect.

There is no direct compensation procedure for insured persons by EOPYY, with proof of receipt payment of the cost of the tests at private diagnostic centers, Xanthos ottld state broadcaster ERT TV on Wednesday afternoon.

He categorically stressed that this procedure initiated by the diagnostic centers is “unlawful,” as long as there are running between the laboratories and the insurance fund.

“This solution that we can open the diagnostic centers and the patient pays out of his own pockets, there is no such provision for EOPYY refund of the patient’s compensation,” the minister said underline that this is “illegal.”

The contract signed by the EOPYY with the diagnostic centers does not provide any other burden for the insured except the 15% self-participation, the minister added.

Such a new practice would mean “de facto withdrawal from the contracts with EOPYY,” he stressed.

Private diagnostic centers serve some 97% of the insured due to long waiting list at public hospitals and health care facilities.

In an effort to facilitate insurers, Minister Xanthos said that patients could seek ppublic facilities for tests without a previous appointment in the morning and afternoon opening hours.

Admitting that the public health system is unable to meet the people’s needs and the majority of citizens turns to private center, he said that the public Health system will try to serve citizens during the strike days.

Patients can seek public hospitals and other public health care facilities without financial burden and without previous appointment through the central appointment system, Xanthos said.

He added that he has initiated these procedures with the governors of the hospitals and of regional governments.

KTG understands that this may concern blood tests only and not scans. But you can always ask at the local public hospital and other health care facilities.

UPDATE: On Thursday the owners of diagnostic centers and laboratory doctors annou7nced that they end their strike.

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