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Health Ministry not planning hospital closures

The Health Ministry has once again pointed out that setting a minimum hospital network does not mean closing those hospitals that are not a part of it.

Tomáš Bley from the ministry's communication department specified that it would be up to the management of these hospitals to make an agreement with health insurance companies.

The health ministry said last week that the government has decided Slovakia should cut nearly 8,000 hospital beds from the number recorded at the end of 2005 to reach its minimum healthcare requirements. The ministry also published a list of 42 hospitals that a special committee deemed as absolutely necessary in Slovakia.

The ministry has always talked about optimising the health care facilities' network and modifying hospitals' profiles, not necessarily closing hospitals, Bley said.

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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