Petteri Orpo (NCP), the Minister of Finance, has drawn amused jeers by declaring last week that the government will save Finland from a takeover by health care conglomerates.
The Finnish government faced a barrage of questions about its draft bill to increase the freedom of patients to choose their social and health care provider from opposition members during a plenary session in the Parliament on Thursday.
Sari Essayah, the chairperson of the Christian Democrats, expressed her reservations about how the reform bill could generate the targeted cost savings of three billion euros in the years to come.
Orpo, in turn, pointed out that although public social and health care costs have doubled since the turn of the millennium, there have been no discernible improvements in the quality of social and health care services.
“People don’t have access to health care centres,” he stated. “That was the main reason why we embarked on this reform process. The freedom of choice will be a way to make sure people get to see a doctor.”
“We’ve realised that if this reform isn’t carried out, major health care conglomerates will take over Finland,” added Orpo. “The government will save Finland from these conglomerates.”
“That’s quite the speech,” exclaimed one Member of Parliament.
The Parliament will discuss the bill to increase patients’ freedom of choice this week.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi