Drucker: I Dare to Change Health-care Sector

Health Minister Tomas Drucker (archive photo by TASR)

Bratislava, April 10 (TASR) – New Health Minister Tomas Drucker (a Smer-SD nominee), who’s been serving in the post for 18 days, said on TA3’s show ‘V Politike’ (In Politics) on Sunday that he dares to change the health-care sector and believes that there is room to take key systemic steps.

Through a discussion with the parties involved Drucker is seeking agreement on an across the board Government Manifesto. “The health-care sector needs consensual agreement, not only a political one. I feel the Government’s support for these changes,” said Drucker. Asked about the biggest problem in the health-care sector, he replied that there are several of them. “These include the question of financing, the rules of financing and the management of public resources,” he said. He declined to speak about particular draft laws that his ministry will present, as he finds this to be premature for now.

Drucker doesn’t view health as a standard commodity that could be commonly traded. “Changes in society have to be considered, as well. The issue of the health-care sector has been left entirely to the state until now. However, I don’t think that the state would be able to fund everything that happens in health sector development for a long time,” he said.

Drucker’s ambition is to obtain as much money as possible from the state for the health-care sector. However, he understands that the state is reluctant to provide this when it isn’t absolutely clear what it will be used for.

Concerning nurses’ salary demands, Drucker said that there are also other health workers, and not only nurses, who have the feeling that their problems aren’t being tackled. “We must find a suitable model of resolution,” he stated, stressing the need to form a working group with the people concerned.

Drucker declined to say at the moment who will be the new boss of state-run health insurer Vseobecna zdravotna poistovna. He’s searching for people from the financial sector, particularly from the insurance or banking spheres. “We must send out a signal that these are new people, not bearing the burden of the past,” he stated.