End the EU.
Finland’s health care situation is already big government (socialist) based, long lines forces many to opt for private care, in effect, paying twice (almost) for the same service. This EU legislation, concocted by some faceless bureaucrat hack somewhere in Europe, now stands to burden the system even more.
Could new EU rules trigger a Finnish healthcare crisis?
Turku’s Turun Sanomat carries a warning of how changes to the EU’s working time directive could bring on-call healthcare to a standstill in Finland, by making current employment arrangements with doctors illegal.
So-called ‘free-form’ on-call systems currently rely on doctors being on standby, meaning they are not paid a full salary, but only receive money for the time spent on care duties.
However, the paper reports that in a precedent-setting case, judges in the EU Court of Justice – which interprets EU law to make sure it is applied in the same way across the Union – ruled that even when an employee is on standby this must be counted as full-time work.
“It is very likely that current arrangements cannot continue as they are,” Risto Ihalainen from the Finnish Medical Association tells the paper.
If every health authority offering an on-call service was forced to begin paying staff full time rates, salary costs would increase dramatically and overtime limits would soon be breached. Changes in the directive would also apply to other professions as well as doctors, Turun Sanomat adds.