Sunday, May 22

To abolish free choice of treatment is to shoot oneself in the foot

  • Ayna Mousavi (19)

    Medical student

I am 19 years old, a medical student in my third year and a working committee member in Oslo Unge Høyre, writes Ayna Mousavi.

Sometimes the black paint of the private health care system is completely hair-raising.

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This is a Si; D post. Opinions in the text are at the writer’s expense. Posts can be sent here.

As medical student and future doctor, it is impossible to sit and watch while the Minister of Health removes schemes that help us save lives.

Today you can choose where you want to be examined and treated, regardless of the size of your wallet. This is due to a scheme called free choice of treatment.

You as a patient can choose whether you want to be treated at your local hospital, the private clinic down the street or in the neighboring county.

Equal access

Free choice of treatment means that you can choose to be treated free of charge by a private provider, as it is the state that takes the bill.

This is possible if the private clinic has an agreement with and is approved by the public. It is also the state that decides how much the bill should be.

One of the most important goals of the health service is to ensure equal access to health services for the poor and for the rich.

Free choice of treatment uses the resources we have in the country. When I become a doctor, I can give the patient the right treatment. But necessary treatment is not always available at the hospital.

For some people, it does not help to be admitted time and time again for the severe eating disorder and follow the same old regime in the hospital. Then it is good that we have alternative schemes in the private health care system.

Unfortunately, private clinics will cost the patient money, if free choice of treatment is removed. Then it hurts in the heart to recommend a treatment you know the patient can not afford.

Unfair reputation

Sometimes the black paint of the private health care system is completely hair-raising.

Private clinics have tested corona patients during the pandemic. The public sector had not had the capacity to test so many, and without private health services we would have had greater challenges during the pandemic.

I’m sure that just as they help us with the coronary pandemic, they can help us with the cancer crisis, myocardial infarction patients, and anyone suffering from metabolic problems.

When you remove the free choice of treatment, you remove the patient’s right to be treated in the private health care system. This means that people who cannot afford to be treated privately are only offered public assistance.

Recipe for disaster

It is a recipe for disaster to distinguish between who can use all the health services in the country and who can not.

I do not want to be a doctor in a country where I can recommend one patient a private health service, while another does not receive the necessary treatment.

There are doctors and nurses who are ready to receive patients at a price decided by the state itself.

To abolish free choice of treatment is to shoot oneself in the foot. In a health care system with too long queues, where many people experience not getting good enough help, removing the free choice of treatment is the wrong medicine.

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