Striking doctors prepare for talks

27th May 2005, Comments 0 comments

27 May 2005, AMSTERDAM — The doctors association LHV has called off strikes planned for Wednesday and Thursday next week based on indications the government is "sincerely" trying to end the industrial dispute.

27 May 2005

AMSTERDAM — The doctors association LHV has called off strikes planned for Wednesday and Thursday next week based on indications the government is "sincerely" trying to end the industrial dispute.

Despite the promise, doctors closed their surgeries again on Friday, the third day of a rolling strike initiated on Wednesday against planned healthcare reforms.

An estimated 90 percent of the nation's 8.000 doctors have been on strike this week.

But after meeting with a top public servant with the Health Ministry, LHV chairman Bas Vos said on Friday planned strikes next week will not go ahead.

He believes the government is "sincerely" seeking to end the dispute and wants to give the ministry enough time to come up with a solution.

However, Vos must still consult with strike co-ordinators about his plans.

Doctors object to plans in which EUR 90 million in government funding for surgery costs will be paid directly to insurers.

Doctors will then receive the funding from insurers if they implement specially-focused programmes such as healthcare for diabetes patients or the elderly.

Vos warned of further strikes if the proposal is not abandoned.

The new funding scheme is linked to the planned introduction of a basic public healthcare insurance scheme next year.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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