Edition 1501
17 November 2018
Edition: 1501

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National Health Convention calls for spending of 7 percent of GDP

by TPN/Lusa, in News · 14-06-2018 13:59:00 · 0 Comments

The National Health Convention, a gathering organised in Lisbon to discuss the future of healthcare in Portugal, has proposed that the share of the state budget earmarked for the sector be increased by at least 0.15 of a percentage point per year in the next decade, and also that funds allocated for prevention be increased.

The convention’s conclusions and some of its recommendations were presented by Miguel Guimarães, the head of the Order of Doctors, one of the bodies involved in the initiative. Guimarães had come up with the idea of a convention to create a “pact” for healthcare and an agenda for the sector for the next decade, and he presided over the meeting.
After presenting the conclusions, he explained to Lusa that the aim of a series of annual increases in healthcare spending as a share of the state budget is that it reaches 7 percent of gross domestic product within 10 years. At present, it is around 5.2 percent.
The convention also called for the share of the healthcare budget devoted to prevention – currently estimated at around 1 percent - be increased by at least 0.25 percentage points a year “until it reaches the average of OECD countries”.
Average spending on disease prevention in members of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development is around 2 percent, but many countries spend as much as 3 percent of their budget on it.
The convention also determined that it is fundamental “to reinforce the backbone” of the National Health Service, as it termed primary healthcare: health centres and other frontline units.
The convention brought together some 90 organisations at a meeting in Lisbon.
Its organisers drew some criticism, however, for not having worked with or invited healthcare trade unions to the initiative.

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Edition 1501
17 November 2018
Edition: 1501

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

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