Eesti Päevaleht daily: Elmer Muna comments on redistribution of public funds for treatment

05.05.2014 Eesti Päevaleht daily: Elmer Muna comments on redistribution of public funds for treatment

Since February this year, private clinics in Estonia have been ringing the alarm bells about the resolution of the management board of the Estonian Health Insurance Fund whereby some private clinics were deprived of the opportunity to compete for funding awarded by the Health Insurance Fund in the same extent as in previous years.

Private clinics have said that they will not stop before bringing the dispute before the Supreme Court. “At the same time next year we will most likely have the final judgment,” Elmer Muna, the representative of Nova Vita and Fertilitas clinics, estimated. Nova Vita, for example, has applied for interim relief for the time when the dispute is pending, requesting that a competition should still be held for the funds for infertility treatment awarded to West-Tallinn and East-Tallinn Central Hospitals so that Nova Vita could compete for those funds.

“Our aim is to achieve a situation where funds are redistributed between service providers having the necessary expertise,” Elmer Muna commented and added “But we are not even given the chance to compete. And the reason they give for excluding us is that the West-Tallinn Central Hospital provides IVF services more efficiently than we do. But this is not at all the case. They simply do not award funding because the West-Tallinn Central Hospital says that they will be able to handle about 480 cases of IVF, and we cannot even compete for those cases. If the court does not grant our petition for interim relief, we may indeed be left with nothing but a claim for compensation against the state, if the court holds that the resolution of the management board of the Health Insurance Fund is unlawful.”

The Employment and Health Minister Urmas Kruuse says that he considers the contribution of private clinics to be important because thanks to them patients have more options to choose from. “The issue of how the Health Insurance Fund chooses its partners for funding is serious, and the management and supervisory boards of the fund will certainly have to discuss the situation,” he said. “Thereafter we are going to analyse the opportunities for supporting the movement towards free competition in nursing, rehabilitation and infertility treatment and to thoroughly examine the proposal of the Competition Board.”

For contact: Elmer Muna