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Doctors to start indexing surgery fees

Published on 20/12/2005

20 December 2005

BRUSSELS — Doctors associations and health insurance funds signed a deal on Tuesday morning regulating fees for 2006 and 2007.

The agreement allows doctors to index their fees to the rate of inflation starting from 1 January 2006, news agency Belga reported. 

In contrast to general medicine doctors, specialists such as neurosurgeans will not be allowed to increase their fees in line with inflation next year.

However, less well paid specialists such as paediatricians and gynaecologists may increase some of their fees above the rate of inflation (25 and 10 percent respectively).

The cost of GP house calls will increase and night-time fees will also be raised. Both measures will take effect from April 2006.

The agreement was reached after late night talks on Monday extended into Tuesday morning.

However, patients will be largely spared the rise in fees. Payments to patients from insurers will also be indexed to inflation, meaning little will change for the public.

Health Minister Rudy Demotte welcomed the deal and said it gave certainty to patients about fees and continued the re-evaluation of general and specialist medicine.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news