By Abdul Kerimkhanov
The Azerbaijani Parliament has adopted amendments to the law "On Compulsory Medical Insurance" aimed at introducing the compulsory medical insurance system in the country.
The amendments provide for a change in the tariffs for mandatory medical insurance and were adopted in the first reading on November 25.
According to the new rules, representatives of the private and non-oil sectors will be obliged in 2020 to pay 1 percent of the salary not exceeding 8,000 ($4,706) manats. In 2021, deductions for this category will amount to 2 percent. Employers will be required to pay 1 percent of the salary fund for the employee in 2020 and 2 percent in 2021. In addition, 0.5 percent will be additionally deducted from part of the salary exceeding 8,000 manats.
Oil and public sector workers will pay 2 percent of the salary not exceeding 8,000 manats and an additional 0.5 percent of the amount exceeding 8,000 manats. Employers will be required to pay 2 percent of the salary fund (not exceeding 8,000 manats) and an additional 0.5 percent of the amount exceeding 8,000 manats.
For persons under the age of 18, as well as those receiving education and under the age of 23, pensioners, persons receiving targeted social aid, pregnant women, refugees, as well as foreign nationals and stateless persons, the cost of the package of services will be 90 manat per year and will be covered from the state budget.
For individuals taken for tax accounting, the cost of a package of services under compulsory medical insurance will amount to 4 percent of the minimum wage. Individuals performing work or services on the basis of civil law contracts to receive a package of compulsory medical insurance will be required to pay 2 percent of income up to 8,000 manats and 1 percent of a part of income exceeding 8,000 manats.
All other persons will be required to pay 48 percent of the minimum wage from 2023.
Insurance premiums will be calculated monthly, and they will need to be paid no later than the 15th day of the next month.
Changes also imply additional payments in cases where the insured does not apply to the medical institution in the direction. In general, the insured must apply to medical institutions on a territorial basis.
The changes involve the elimination of the concepts of basic and additional service packages and the introduction of a single service package.
In addition, the concept of the amount of co-financing is introduced - part of the losses that do not fall under the compulsory medical insurance, and paid by the insured.
Refugees have been added to the list of insured, as well as foreign nationals and stateless persons taken under guardianship by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.
In addition, the changes determine the circle of persons who will not be subject to the compulsory medical insurance system. This category includes persons performing military service, persons under investigation, prisoners, as well as persons who, in accordance with the Migration Code of Azerbaijan, are temporarily or resident in the country.
The amendments also imply the liquidation of a clause that involves transfers from calendar contributions by members of the Compulsory Insurance Bureau.
The amendments enter into force on January 1, 2020.
Earlier, Chairman of Management Board of State Agency for Compulsory Medical Insurance of Azerbaijan Zaur Aliyev said that the phased introduction of the compulsory medical insurance system will begin in 2020 and completed in the fourth quarter of next year.
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 executed by the State Compulsory Health Insurance Agency, the mission for Europe and international affairs of the Ministry of Social Affairs of France and Lithuanian social protection bodies.
During the first year of implementation of the pilot project, a lot of attention was paid to the number of services and their accessibility for the population, and in the second year, the attention was paid more to the quality. At the same time, organizers prepared a plan for a full transition of the entire country to compulsory medical insurance.
Implementing large infrastructure projects and application of effective policies in medical industry serve to the improvement of the healthcare system in the country.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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