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Conference on sustainable investments in health

Apr 29
Pauls Stradins Medicine History Museum, Ukrainas Neatkarības 1

On April 29, AmCham and the Ministry of Health held a conference dedicated to investments in health "Sustainable investments - predictable results". The conference was attended by Minister of Health Hosams Abu Meri, Minister of Finance Arvils Aseradens, international experts and officials from Denmark, Estonia, OECD, as well as representatives of patient organizations and hospitals. The conference discussed sustainable healthcare financing models, a transparent and evidence-based budget planning process, as well as evaluated the impact of financing models on healthcare availability and expected results.

Health Minister Abu Meri, opening the conference, emphasized: “Health spending is an investment in security and economy. It is necessary to ensure the stability of funding, following the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO), allocating at least 12% of government budget expenditures to health care. It is necessary to look for solutions for sustainable healthcare financing with a focus on the availability and analysis of health data, in decision-making, to create prevention and health promotion programs, as well as to introduce healthcare reforms to improve the availability of services.

On the other hand, the Minister of Finance Arvils Aseradens emphasized: "Health care and its quality is one of the cornerstones of the state's well-being - the healthier people are, the better the state's economy is doing. We need to improve both the life expectancy of the Latvian population and the number of healthy years - in these indicators we are significantly below the OECD averages. Latvia is constantly increasing investments in its health sector, but there is always not enough money. We need to become much more efficient and targeted in our actions in order to achieve the desired results faster and in a transparent future. Firstly, a clear long-term development plan is needed, the center of which is a whole, healthy Latvian society, not the amount of investment as such, secondly, a road map with specific, measurable goals is needed, and adequate funding for achieving these goals. That is why I have proposed fundamental changes in our government and move to a result-oriented budgeting model. This will allow us to see much more clearly where we are investing effectively and where improvements or a different approach are needed."

Boriss Knigins, Deputy State Secretary of the Ministry of Health for Financial Affairs, presented potential healthcare financing models, as well as benefits for society, healthcare professionals and policy makers.

The presentation of the director of the Budget Policy Development Department of the Ministry of Finance, Kārlis Ketner, presented the new vision of creating a result-oriented budget.

Board member of the Estonian Health Insurance Fund, Pille Banhard, presented the Estonian health care financing model, and former head of the Danish Health Data Service Department, Karen Mary Lyng, presented the Danish health care financing and data system.

OECD economic expert Robert Grundke shared OECD recommendations on how to finance sustainable health systems. One of the key findings is that in the long term, investing 1% of GDP in education and health care, redistributing election expenses from other sectors, will lead to a 1.5-1.8% increase in GDP.

In the panel discussion, which consisted of the Deputy State Secretary of the Ministry of Health Boriss Knigins, representative of the Ministry of Finance Karlis Ketners, OECD economist Eness Sunel, member of the board of the Estonian Health Insurance Fund, Pille Banhard, member of the board of the network of Latvian patient organizations Baiba Ziemele and chairman of the board of RAKUS Normunds Stanevics, current issues in health care financing and ensuring efficiency were discussed, including emphasizing the need to maintain a dialogue between the various parties involved, as well as to collect, maintain and analyze patient data in order to better plan the necessary funding and monitor results.

The conference ended with the recognition of the need to continue cross-sectoral discussions and agree on clear investments in health care and performance indicators, which would be essential for both the ministries of health and finance, patients and health service providers.

The conference was chaired by Martins Daugulis, vice-dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences of RSU.

Event partners: AbbVie, Amgen, IQVIA, Johnson&Johnson, Medtronic, Novartis, Roche and Siemens.

Take a look at the video report from the conference

To view the Agenda

The OECD report Fiscal Sustainability Health by Enes Sunel

The OECD report Investments Health by Robert Grundke

The Ministry of Health presentation Unlocking Potential Revenues in the Healthcare Sector by Boriss Knigins

The Ministry of Finance presentation On the Road Toward Result-Oriented State Budget by Karlis Ketners

The presentation Takeaways from the Estonian Healthcare Funding Model by Pille Banhard

The presentation Introduction to the Danish Healthcare System by Karen Marie Lyng

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