Romania should allocate 6-7 percent of GDP for healthcare spending by 2016, says AmCham

Newsroom 10/04/2013 | 13:43

The healthcare system in Romania should reach an allocation of around 6 to 7 percent of GDP in the next three years, said Violeta Ciurel on Tuesday, president of the Healthcare Group of AmCham, during a conference on the healthcare system.

Ciurel said the expenditure for medicines accounts for 27 percent of healthcare spending. She warned the Romanian taxation of pharma producers is higher compared to other countries.

The AmCham representative that diversifying the financing sources can help the healthcare system, adding that more private players should get involved.

Cristian Vladescu, general director of the National School of Public Healthcare and Sanitary Management, reckons Romania should rethink the financing model of the healthcare system.

“On the medium term, Romania spends 10 to 15 percent of the consolidated budget, and this budget is around 35 percent of GDP. Theses indicators, which are below the EU average, should represent a starting point (for reform),” said Vladescu.

In the last ten years, the healthcare budget hovered around 3.5 to 4 percent of GDP, reaching 4.2 percent this year, according to Radu Comsa, consultant and director of Mind Research & Rating.  The allocation grew this year, following the government’s pledge to start repaying the debts due for pharma producers.

He warned that any increase of the healthcare budget will have to come from the private sector, arguing that an expansion of the private healthcare insurance would see the total healthcare budget reach 7 percent of GDP.

“The National Healthcare Fund is in a difficult situation, registering constant deficits with outstanding payments,” said Comsa.

The consultant said the revenues from healthcare contributions have remained constant, so the fund can’t rely on additional revenues from this source.

Healthcare officials aim to complete this year a national healthcare strategy and to draw up a package of healthcare services, said Adrian Pana, state secretary at the Healthcare Ministry. He added that hospitals are the main suppliers of healthcare services in Romania.

Ovidiu Posirca

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