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Experts have the first data on how much health care will cost to people from Ukraine who came to the Czech Republic after the beginning of Russian aggression.
Employees of the largest domestic health insurance company VZP calculated that there should be around 420,000 Ukrainian refugees in the Czech Republic this summer. A substantial part is registered with the General Health Insurance Company. According to this insurance company, there will be about 360,000 of them.
According to the plan, VZP will pay around 251 billion crowns for the health care of all its roughly six million insured persons. Subsequently, she estimates that her care for people from Ukraine will cost about 7.1 billion crowns.
“The estimate is based on the age distribution of refugees and the cost in individual age groups,” said VZP in a material she submitted to the members of its board of directors.
Almost 300,000 refugees registered
According to the latest data, the General Health Insurance has already registered 298,900 refugees from Ukraine. Of these, about 136,000 are women, less than 119,000 children and over 44,000 men.
According to data available to VZP, over 18,000 of them have already started working in the Czech Republic. “Now it turns out that the outlook for Ukrainian refugees could be more optimistic. About eleven percent of the group of people who could work here between the ages of 18 and 65 have already started working, “said VZP director Zdeněk Kabátek.
And CEO Philipp Philipp has a similar view. According to him, VZP expected that ten percent of refugees would be employed. It is already clear that their number will be higher. At the same time, each such refugee could bring an average of around 29,000 crowns to the budget each year.
“The negative balance of income and expenses will have no effect on the provision of care for our permanent Czech policyholders or on VZP’s payments,” said Philipp.
The mentioned amount for care in the amount of 7.1 billion crowns is not final. Other domestic health insurance companies will also pay for the health care of refugees. It is not yet known how much it will be. It is estimated that only a few tens of thousands of Ukrainians have registered with other insurance companies so far.
VZP also mixes covid with the management
In addition, not only the refugee wave, but also the covid-19 epidemic will increase the decline of the General Health Insurance Company in 2022. Originally, its management anticipated that this year there would be a deficit of 5.8 billion crowns. But these circumstances will increase it to about 12.4 billion.
According to VZP spokeswoman Viktorie Plívová, the insurance company expects to cover this amount from its reserves. But while at the end of 2021 it had 29.7 billion crowns in its bank account, it currently estimates that before the end of next year it should be only about 4.5 billion crowns.
Všeobecná zdravotní pojišťovna also estimated that it would lose 8.8 billion crowns in the budget due to the change in payments for state insured persons. The former government of Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (YES) has increased payments for children, the elderly and the unemployed by CZK 200 to CZK 1,967 since January this year. However, in mid-February, the cabinet of the current Prime Minister Petr Fiala (ODS) approved a law according to which the amount paid will be reduced to 1,567 crowns from 1 July.