Romanian patients suffering from life-threatening conditions will have access to the latest treatments.
In Romania, patients suffering from rare diseases, cancer, hepatitis C, cardiovascular conditions or multiple sclerosis will have unhampered access to the latest treatments, at the proposal of the Health Ministry, based on therapeutic recommendations, the stage of the disease and the associated conditions. The Government has passed an emergency decree in this respect and the Health Ministry has proposed a formula for covering the cost of expensive medicines, that involves both the health insurer and those who own the license of distributing the new treatment on the market, the Government’s spokesman Nelu Barbu has said.
Nelu Barbu: “The predictability of costs is thus ensured for both the budget of the national health insurance fund and for the license owners. Patients will not have to contribute at all, as the difference between the medicine’s market price and the total cost of the treatment for every patient will be covered by the medicine license owners in the form of a three-month contribution.”
According to Radu Gănescu, president of the National Coalition of Organisations for Patients with Chronic Conditions of Romania, the Government’s measure comes against the background of a serious lack of medicines in the case of chronic patients. Gănescu has mentioned a recent study according to which more than half of the patients paid for their medical investigations by themselves. Most of them needed surgery and only some of them were operated on in the town where they have their domicile.
According to a recent study drawn up by the Institute for Public Policies, 64% of Romanians are generally satisfied with the access they have to medicines, 15% are not satisfied with it while 5% are completely unsatisfied. The high price of medicines, the small number of subsidized prescription medicines and the complicated procedures for getting the treatment they need are the main reasons for discontent.
The head of the Institute for Public Policies, Adrian Moraru, has explained: “The problem is that we live in two types of Romania – the Bucharest’s Romania, with pharmacies at every street corner and the rural Romania, where all these things are more complicated, in terms of logistics and contracts with the distributors. The problem of the lack of medicines is real and you will hear about it more and more often. Romania has an aging population and this problems will become more serious.”
73% of the respondents in the survey conduced by the Institute for Public Policies say they take medicines several times a day, mostly for heart conditions.