“Health standards should be high in the Republic of Armenia” – PM refers to the introduction of a comprehensive health insurance system
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Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan held a consultation on introducing a comprehensive health insurance system in the Republic of Armenia.
“This is a strategic issue for the Republic of Armenia and for our government, because access to health care and medical services is the key to public welfare, and we clearly stated in the electoral program of My Step alliance that we must achieve tangible progress in this area by 2023. Work is underway in this direction for a while now. We have been working on this issue since the previous government was formed, and today we have to discuss where we have come, and which way we will go ahead,” the Prime Minister said, opening the meeting.
Acting Health Minister Arsen Torosyan reported that efforts have been made to outline the necessary steps and a relevant analytical document has been developed. He the main objectives behind the introduction of a comprehensive health insurance system in Armenia, ensuring enhanced quality and accessibility of healthcare and medical services for the population, identifying new financing sources, introducing new healthcare quality control mechanisms, enhancing the effectiveness of sector management, combating shadow turnover. Concerning the principles, he mentioned solidarity and justice guarantees, reduction of financial risks and integration of service packages. Arsen Torosyan provided the analysis of the system coverage, investment stages, insurance coverage, preliminary estimates of insurance premiums, institutional, financing and governance mechanisms of the system, as well as international successful experience in this respect.
During the exchange of views that followed, the speakers dwelt on specific details related to the introduction of the comprehensive health insurance system. In particular, issues related to the format of management, timing of investment, coverage, financing mechanisms, opportunities of public-private partnership were discussed. The representatives of stakeholders came up with comments and recommendations on the document at hand.
Nikol Pashinyan noted that the purpose of the discussion was to develop a roadmap for introducing a comprehensive health insurance system, account taken of eventual scenarios and viewpoints in order to achieve optimal solutions.
Touching upon the government’s policy in the field of healthcare, the Prime Minister stated, in part, “Our political stance is as follows: health standards should be high in the Republic of Armenia.”
Stressing the need for holding public debates on the matter, Nikol Pashinyan pointed out that the public should be informed of the proposed reforms on a regular basis. “At the embryonic level, the public should be informed of what we are talking about, what options are being discussed, and which way we go. This is a key component in any reform process. The ideas and models used in other countries should be discussed. We must definitely go that way to be able to handle the problems in the right atmosphere,” the Head of Government said.
The Premier instructed the representatives of relevant government departments to do a joint work in order to ascertain the respective positions on conceptual issues and submit specific proposals and a clear timetable within a short period of time.