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Parliamentary questions
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10 November 2015
E-014577-15
Question for written answer E-014577-15
to the Commission
Rule 130
Nikolaos Chountis (GUE/NGL)

 Subject:  Collapse of the Greek National Health System (NHS) and the right to cross-border care
 Answer in writing 

In Greece, the health system has collapsed due to the ‘Memoranda’: in 2013, one in ten Greeks had to go without treatment because of the prohibitive cost; intensive care units remain closed; university clinical are facing closure; patients with serious conditions (cancer patients) have to wait between two and eight months to get an appointment; and waiting times for an appointment in an ophthalmological or a diabetes clinic are between three and five months.

Basically, Directive 24/2011/EU is not being implemented (in 2014, Greece failed to record any reimbursement of expenses) due to the cuts, the bureaucracy and the requirement to pay hospitalisation costs in advance.

Given the above and Judgment C-372/04, which provides that insurance funds may not refuse authorisation for the cross-border transfer of a patient due to long waiting periods for hospital treatment, and given also the administrative obstacles and the lack of public information about Directive 2/2011/EC,

Will the Commission say:
Is Judgment C-372/04 being applied in Greece? If so, is Greece one of the Member States which will be looking for ways to ease the situation of the poorer sectors of the population and what will its response be?
What will be done to facilitate the application of the directive in respect of the requirement to pay hospitalisation costs in advance and what should Greek patients do to overcome the obstacles?
What commitments have been made in the ‘Memoranda’ and in which timeframe in the medical field? Is the Commission considering exempting the NHS and university hospitals from the restrictions on recruitment?
Original language of question: EL 
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