Minister of Health Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson has established a committee to simplify the public’s financial contribution to Iceland’s healthcare system. The committee is headed by actuary and Independence Party MP Pétur Blöndal.
“Currently there are many different systems that don’t work together,” Blöndal told 24 stundir daily (previously Bladid). “The goal is to reach out to those in need of assistance. Systems that are supposed to be socially just are often so complicated that they become socially unjust.”
Blöndal’s committee will focus first on repayments for medicine and then go through every aspect of the health insurance system, one at a time. Thórdarsson’s goal is to transform the system and simplify it.
“Regulations on the price of medicine are so complicated that one cannot help but ask whether there is any rational reasoning behind it,” Blöndal said. “The logic behind the current system seems to be that if diseases are fatal, people have increased rights to repayments. But people who suffer from long-term diseases often have difficulties paying for medicine, even though the disease isn’t fatal.”
Blöndal’s vision for the future is that people should be entitled to free healthcare after reaching a certain limit in expenses, no matter whether they have used their money to pay for medicine or to go to the doctor.