Quadripartite Committee Agree to Improve Health and Maternity Insurance

At its meeting today, on 18 October 2017, the Luxembourg Quadripartite Committee introduced further improvements for insured persons regarding health and maternity insurance benefits.

The Quadripartite Committee, under the chairmanship of Social Security Minister Romain Schneider, first examined the current financial situation of health and maternity insurance, as well as the latest financial forecasts for the current year and for the financial year 2018.

According to the latest data, the current account balance is expected to be €153.5 million for 2017, after a balance of €181.7 million in 2016. The estimates show a positive balance of €110 million in 2018. Therefore, the aggregate balance of health and maternity insurance should be €740.6 million in 2017.

Regarding improvements to health and maternity insurance benefits, Minister Schneider presented to the committee a set of measures to improve the services provided by the National Health Fund. These are in line with those decided in 2016 and implemented in 2017, mainly in dental care and visual aids. The improvements on which the Quadripartite Committee agreed in principle are based on three main axes: the reduction of family expenses; the consideration of serious and chronic pathologies in the context of reimbursements; the modernisation of care standards.

For the first axis, it will be necessary to 100% reimburse consultations for young people under the age of 18. Similarly, a 100% reimbursement for speech-language pathology and psychomotricity for under 18s is planned.

With respect to contraceptive management, the age limit will be increased from 25 years to 30 years and the IUD will be covered. In addition, an increase in home visits by midwives is planned as part of the revision of their nomenclature.

For heavy and chronic diseases, which require regular and often expensive care, the reimbursement of related benefits will be reviewed. Thus, it is planned to launch a “long-term illnesses” action plan with the aim of focusing existing measures on the needs of patients with long-term illnesses.

Under the third axis, health and maternity insurance will cover pneumococcal vaccination – as is the case with influenza vaccination – which protects against the main cause of pneumonia, targeting at-risk populations such as the elderly.

As part of the improvements in the management of certain dental procedures that are being developed, a reduction in the time required to renew joint prostheses will also be discussed in the relevant bodies. Also under development is the management of various medical devices related to cancer.

Moreover, a common awareness campaign will be carried out in the short-term calling on doctors to carry out the “strep test” before prescribing an antibiotic.

Finally, the new draft law on hospitals and hospital planning, currently discussed in the Health Committee of the Chamber of Deputies, should come into force in early 2018.