NEW PRIORITY AREAS FOR HEALTHCARE REFORMS ARE IDENTIFIED
On November 9, 2018, a meeting was held under the chairmanship of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev dedicated to the analysis of the results of ongoing reforms on development of healthcare system, coverage of regional residents with high-quality medical care, strengthening the material and technical base of medical institutions, as well as identifying future priorities.
The Head of the state noted that the main goal of all reforms is to improve people’s lives, an important place in this is taken by high-quality medicine.
Over the past two years, 50 decrees, resolutions and orders of the President, more than 70 resolutions and orders of the Cabinet of Ministers have been adopted in this sphere. 6 new scientific practical medical centers were organized, their total number reached 16. In the regions, 10 branches of centers were opened for creating even greater amenities for the population. In the district and city hospitals, 306 new specialized departments, 1.2 thousand emergency rooms were organized.
In general, this year the State budget allocated 40 percent more funds to medicine compared with 2017. At the meeting, it was noted that next year it is planned to allocate 30 percent more funds to the sphere than this year.
The recent resolution of the President “On measures of strengthening the material incentives for employees of state medical institutions and healthcare authorities” became another important step in this direction. In accordance with it, the wages of medical workers will be increased by 20 percent from December 1 of the current year and another 15 percent from April 1, 2019.
Many decrees and resolutions have been adopted, ample opportunities have been created for the sphere, and current issues have been resolved. However, the healthcare system isn’t yielding the expected results. Especially in districts, remote settlements, residents do not feel the effect of serious and radical changes in medical care, said Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
At the meeting devoted to the analysis of results of the ongoing reforms on development of healthcare system, it was noted that the receipt of more than 45 thousand medical appeals in the President’s Virtual Reception Office over the past period this year indicates that there are still many problems in the sphere.
So, the level of material-technical base and provision of primary medico-sanitary institutions, district central hospitals with qualified personnel do not meet the requirements. As a result, patients are forced to incur large expenses when arriving in the city of Tashkent or traveling abroad.
In this regard, the need for timely identification and solution of problems in the medical system, a complete re-examination of the state of affairs in the regions, covering bоth rural medical stations and family polyclinics, and central medical institutions was noted.
The need for strengthening interaction between the republican, regional, district and rural levels of medical care was also noted. At the same time, first of all, preventive work and medical examinations in makhallas will be well organized. Patients, if necessary, will be sent to district and regional centers. And district medical associations will treat on their own and send seriously ill patients to regional and republican institutions. In turn, republican specialized scientific-practical medical centers will implement a unified methodological, technological, therapeutic and preventive policy on their profile and help strengthen population’s health.
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At the meeting, held on November 9 under the chairmanship of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, attention was paid to issues of motherhood and childhood protection. Instructions were given on deeply analyzing the factors of maternal and child mortality, development of specific measures for their elimination.
It was noted that activity on prevention of non-communicable diseases is not up to standard. Activities of a number of relevant specialized centers were criticized.
In some regions, work on prevention and treatment of infectious diseases is unsatisfactory. In particular, despite a decrease in incidence of hepatitis, pulmonary tuberculosis in the country over the past period of the current year to 20 percent, in some districts of the Republic of Karakalpakstan, Bukhara, Navoi, Kashkadarya, Namangan, Syrdarya and Jizzakh regions remain unfavorable.
In this regard, measures for addressing the existing shortcomings were discussed, after examining the state of the material-technical base and treatment at the republican specialized scientific practical medical centers, AIDS prevention, the development and implementation of legal mechanisms for the compulsory examination of people who returned after working abroad was considered.
At the meeting, attention was paid to further expansion of private medical institutions network. It was noted that Uzbekistan has great opportunities for development of all areas of private medicine, provision of medical services not only to compatriots, but also to citizens of neighboring countries.
Therefore, responsible persons were tasked with expanding private medical institutions network, creating health hubs in such large cities as Tashkent, Samarkand, Andijan and others.
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The most low-cost and effective way of preventing diseases is to promote a healthy lifestyle and proper nutrition. Unfortunately, due to a sedentary lifestyle and poor nutrition, half of the population of Uzbekistan is overweight, 46 percent have high blood cholesterol, and 31 percent have high blood pressure.
At the meeting, devoted to the analysis of results of ongoing reforms in development of healthcare system, the need was noted for strengthening disease prevention through promotion of a healthy lifestyle and a culture of proper nutrition among the population.
Directions of development of medicine in the medium and long term were also discussed. The President gave instructions on development of a draft concept for development of healthcare system in Uzbekistan until 2025.
It was noted that current estimated method of financing the sphere is outdated, medical institutions are funded based not on the number of treated patients, but on the number of beds. Therefore, instructions were given, taking into account modern requirements and foreign experience, on introducing as an experiment in one medical association of each region of the country financing based on the number of people treated in inpatient conditions.
Today, a system of compulsory health insurance has been introduced in all developed countries, which makes it possible to reduce budget expenditures and improve the quality of medical services.
At the meeting, the need was noted for phased introduction of the compulsory health insurance system in the country from 2021, development of relevant laws and regulations with involvement of consultants from South Korea, Singapore, Germany and other countries.
Measures have been identified for development of public-private partnership in medicine, equipping some medical institutions with high-tech equipment based on this mechanism, granting them full financial independence.
Particular attention was paid to issues of reforming medical education. Instructions were given on opening branches of prestigious foreign education institutions, strengthening the integration between scientific-research institutes and specialized medical centers.
At the meeting, information of responsible managers was heard on the discussed issues.