Hospitals ’overlook’ patient rights / News / The Foreigner

Hospitals ’overlook’ patient rights. A Masters-level anaesthetist nurse claims Norwegian hospitals deliberately avoid sending patients abroad for treatment. Only 25 people have received medical care in another country since 2004 despite rules designed to guarantee treatment within a time limit. “Hospitals don’t benefit from informing patients about their rights. The hospitals have to pay the bills for treatment abroad. This means they are reluctant to send patients there even though these patients are entitled to it,” Carmen G. D. Louwerens tells Aftenposten. The government has passed legislation giving people the right to prompt treatment by a certain date, even if it means sending them abroad or to private hospitals.

hospitals, patients, waiting, queues, medical, rights, government, conservative, party, bent, hoeie, helfo



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Hospitals ’overlook’ patient rights

Published on Monday, 13th September, 2010 at 21:32 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

A Masters-level anaesthetist nurse claims Norwegian hospitals deliberately avoid sending patients abroad for treatment. Only 25 people have received medical care in another country since 2004 despite rules designed to guarantee treatment within a time limit.

Medifa Pat Trans 4605 (Illus. photo)
Medifa Pat Trans 4605 (Illus. photo)
Photo: Mattes/Wikimedia Commons


“Hospitals don’t benefit from informing patients about their rights. The hospitals have to pay the bills for treatment abroad. This means they are reluctant to send patients there even though these patients are entitled to it,” Carmen G. D. Louwerens tells Aftenposten.

The government has passed legislation giving people the right to prompt treatment by a certain date, even if it means sending them abroad or to private hospitals.

But waiting-times are on the increase. Over 70,000 patients did not receive treatment within the deadline last year.

The Conservative Party’s (H) head of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health and Care, Bent Høie, thinks the hospitals have to do better.

“It is serious if the law isn’t followed-up properly, both for the patient and the community. It costs more to treat people who wait a long time for medical care,” he says.

HELFO (the Norwegian Health Economics Administration) Director Kjell Arne Knutsen thinks people have a right to proper information.

“The population needs to be better informed about the scheme, and what to do when hospitals exceed the deadline they have originally set,” says HELFO Director Kjell Arne Knutsen.

HELFO is a sub-ordinate institution directly linked to the Directorate of Health (Helsedirektoratet) which helps waiting patients get medical attention.

Norway does not use as much spare medical capacity in neighbouring countries as its European counterparts. Carmen Louwerens believes waiting times for several large patient groups could be cut if things were changed.

“The capacity in the public and private sectors in Norway is stretched beyond its limits, whilst travelling is not such as strain on these patients,” she says.



Published on Monday, 13th September, 2010 at 21:32 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .

This post has the following tags: hospitals, patients, waiting, queues, medical, rights, government, conservative, party, bent, hoeie, helfo.





  
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