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“In difficulty”, the private hospital sector is demanding a 10% increase in its resources

Private health establishments, hit by inflation and a “never before seen” deficit, are demanding a 10% increase in their resources, that is to say in their prices set annually by the State, argued Wednesday the Federation of Private Hospitalization (FHP).

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“In difficulty”, the private hospital sector is demanding a 10% increase in its resources

Private health establishments, hit by inflation and a “never before seen” deficit, are demanding a 10% increase in their resources, that is to say in their prices set annually by the State, argued Wednesday the Federation of Private Hospitalization (FHP). The government must unveil by mid-April at the latest the evolution for 2024 of clinic prices, which are strictly regulated.

Hospitals in all sectors (public, private, private non-profit, cancer centers, home hospitalization) have suffered greatly from inflation in 2023, and estimate that 1.5 billion euros were missing from the hospital budget. Social security to compensate for this price increase. Increase in energy, laundry contracts, catering...

At the end of 2023, around 40% of private health establishments were in deficit and “if we stay within what is programmed” in the Social Security budget for 2024, “53% will be in deficit” at the end of the year, warned during a press conference the president of the FHP, Lamine Gharbi. Among the most deficit services are emergency rooms and maternity wards, which play an important role “for access to care”, he stressed.

Also read: Sébastien Proto: “Without compensation for inflation, private hospitals risk having to stop certain activities”

The national health insurance spending objective (Ondam) planned for 2024 “is disingenuous” and must be revised, he argued. The current Ondam only allows a 3.2% increase in prices for medicine, surgery and obstetrics, while private hospitals “need a 10% increase” to finance in particular the increase in costs and apply the same salary increases (in particular for night and weekend shifts) than the public sector, he specified. He also denounced a “treatment dichotomy” between public and private.

On February 16, the government announced that it would release “exceptional aid” of 500 million euros to “support” establishments whose activity has progressed but whose financial health has deteriorated. “The distribution is totally inequitable: 15% for the private sector, 15% for the non-profit private sector and 70% for the public,” lamented Mr. Gharbi. However, he said, “35% of hospital activity is carried out by the private sector for profit.”

He finally considered it “shocking” that the authorities returned to public hospitals 470 million euros of credits entered in the budget but not consumed in 2023, because for him this amounts to “financing those who do not work”. In this period of strained finances, he added, “we must move away from a short-term vision” and adopt “a multi-year programming law” which in the hospital world “has broad consensus”.

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