Introduction of mandatory health insurance underway
By Mirsaid Ibrahimzade
Azerbaijan takes serious measures to improve medical industry, including increasing the efficiency of health care, carrying out large infrastructure projects and application of effective policies which are aimed to increase the transparency of the health care system in the country.
State Agency on Mandatory Health Insurance under the Cabinet of Ministers of Azerbaijan signed a memorandum of understanding with the Center for Public Health and Reform under the Ministry of Health.
The chairman of the agency’s board, Zaur Aliyev, and Gahraman Hagverdiyev, the director of the center, signed a document which provides for joint work on the preparation of medical procedures, guidelines and rules for medical institutions that will operate under compulsory health insurance from 2020. Within the framework of the memorandum, participation of specialists from core areas is planned.
The pilot project on compulsory health insurance has been implemented in Azerbaijan since late 2016. It currently covers the city of Mingachevir and the Yevlakh and Aghdash regions. The project is being implemented by the State Agency on Mandatory Health Insurance, which began operating in February 2016.
Aliyev noted that in order to achieve successful results, there is a plan on an exchange of experience between the agency and the center. The memorandum also envisages joint work on the exchange of information. In addition, potential areas have been identified for further cooperation and organization of events.
Earlier, he noted that the Mandatory Health Insurance system will contribute to reducing the outflow of doctors from the country’s regions to Baku.
Gahraman Hagverdiyev, in turn, emphasized that this cooperation will contribute to the implementation of health care reforms and speed up the process of introducing the system of compulsory medical insurance in the country.
As for the pilot project, during the first year of the project implementation, a lot of attention was paid to the number of services and their accessibility for the population, and in the second year, the greater attention was paid to quality. A plan for a full transition of the entire country to mandatory medical insurance was prepared.
Expensive medical services should be covered by compulsory health insurance and should be accessible to the public. So necessity of this type of insurance is undeniable. From January 1, 2020, compulsory health insurance will be applied in Azerbaijan.
The EU-sponsored twinning project “Support for the Mandatory Medical Insurance System in Azerbaijan” started in August 2017, as a result of cooperation between the State Agency and Lithuanian government agencies on social protection and Expertise France.
Mirsaid Ibrahimzade is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @MirsaidIbrahim1
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