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Health Systems in Transition ; 23(1):1-183, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1609713


This analysis of the Slovene health system reviews recent developments in organization and governance, health financing, health care provision, health reforms and health system performance. Slovenia has a statutory health insurance system with a single public insurer, providing almost universal coverage for a broad benefits package, though some services require relatively high levels of co-insurance (called co-payments in Slovenia). To cover these costs, about 95% of the population liable for cost-sharing purchases complementary, voluntary health insurance. Health expenditure per capita and as a share of GDP has increased slightly, but still trails behind the EU average. Among statutory health insurance countries, Slovenia is rather unique in that it relies almost exclusively on payroll contributions to fund its system, making health sector revenues vulnerable to economic and labour market fluctuations, and population ageing. Important organizational changes are underway or have been implemented, especially in prevention, primary, emergency and long-term care. Access to services is generally good, given wide coverage of statutory health insurance. Further, Slovenia has some of the lowest rates of out-of-pocket and catastrophic spending in the EU, due to extensive uptake of complementary voluntary health insurance. Yet long waiting times for some services are a persistent issue. Though population health has improved in the last decades, health inequalities due to gender, social and economic determinants and geography remain an important challenge. There is variation in health care performance indicators, but Slovenia performs comparatively well for its level of health spending overall. As such, there is clear scope to improve health and efficiency, including balancing population needs when planning health service volumes. Recently, the Slovene health care system was overwhelmed by the demand for COVID-19-related care. The pandemicas longer-term effects are still unknown, but it has significantly impacted on life expectancy in the short-term and resulted in delayed or forgone consultations and treatments for other health issues, and longer waiting times. Additional challenges, which are necessary to address to ensure long-term sustainability, strengthen resiliency and improve the capacity for service delivery and quality of care of the health system include: 1) health workforce planning;2) outdated facilities;3) health system performance assessment;and 4) implementation of current LTC reform.

Eurohealth ; 26(2):88-92, 2020.
Article in English | GIM | ID: covidwho-942002


All countries in Europe will have to find solutions to protect hospitals from revenue shortfalls and to adequately reimburse for COVID-19-related costs of care. This article reports on changes to hospital payment systems in Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Poland, Romania, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom (England). Hospitals in these countries are paid for treating COVID-19 patients using the usual system, modified Diagnosis Related Groups or new mechanisms. In many countries, hospitals receive their usual budgets or new money to compensate for revenue shortfalls. Only a few countries are paying non-contracted providers.