GHS to improve services

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The General Healthcare System will be upgraded in September, with two private hospital Emergency and Accident departments joining the GHS, while authorities are introducing quality criteria for GPs.

In comments to Phileleftheros Daily, the general manager of the state Health Insurance Organisation, Andreas Papaconstantinou, confirmed that the E&A department of the ‘Ygeia’ Hospital in Limassol is coming online on September 25.

In Nicosia, the Apollonio Hospital’s E&A department was also set to join the GHS on the same date, but ongoing construction works have pushed the date back to October 1.

The Apollonio is currently remodelling its facilities to offer full emergency services to the beneficiaries of the GHS.

“It looks like it will take a few more weeks,” said Papaconstantinou.

Following the addition of the two E&A departments, which are expected to alleviate pressure on public hospitals, the authority will seek similar agreements with hospitals and clinics in the Larnaca and Paphos districts.

From September 1, the working hours of on-call clinics will be tweaked.

On-call clinics will be open for the public for two hours less on Saturdays while opening an additional two hours on Sundays.

With the change, clinics will have the same working hours on Saturdays and Sundays, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., including holidays.

Next month, the HIO will also change how doctors are compensated for visits, as 20% of their compensation will rely on them meeting quality criteria.

The remaining 80% will continue to be paid to them as per capita income, according to the number and age of beneficiaries registered on their list.

From September, the criterion related to the participation of doctors in educational seminars will also be applied.

In addition, doctors will be able to increase their income if they proceed to screen all their beneficiaries over 45 for blood pressure.