Physicians to Be Allowed to Work in Both Public and Private Institutions?

Total Croatia News

Important changes coming to the Croatian healthcare system.

Health Minister Dario Nakić announced a draft of the new regulations on supplementary work of health workers, according to which all physicians and other health professionals who regularly perform their duties in the medical institution in which they are employed and have the approval of the general manager could start working for private employer as well, reports on March 28, 2016.

“It is a stimulating measure which aims to keep doctors working in Croatia. We want to allow those who want and can to earn extra income, but under clearly defined rules which cannot be at the expense of their regular work in the medical institution in which they are employed”, says the Minister. “I do not mind someone earning money with their work, I am more afraid of those who earn something without working. If we could raise the average salary in Croatia by 200 to 300 euros, I am confident that a large number of people now thinking about leaving Croatia would stay here because the quality of life in Croatia is still better than elsewhere”, says Nakić.

According to current regulations, the approval for the supplementary work can be given only to doctors who work in their institutions more than their average monthly gross salary, but not to those doctors whose waiting lists are longer than 60 days. Also, the approval can be given only to 50 percent of health professionals in any given department. Nakić believes that this provision discriminates some physicians.

Mario Drlje, president of the Association of Croatian Patients, who has opposed the supplementary work of physicians due to the possibility for “transfer” of patients from public to private health care, does not support the further liberalization of supplementary work. He says that this is “the last nail in the coffin of the public health system”, right at the moment when it is lacking a large number of doctors. He believes that the liberalization of supplementary work in the health system will not stop physicians from leaving the country because everyone has the right to go in search of better financial conditions, and, therefore, Croatia should allow foreign doctors to come if they are ready to accept Croatian conditions.


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