SURVEY

Most Slovaks distrust health minister

MORE than one-half of Slovaks do not trust Heath Minister Ivan Valentovič, a public opinion poll on the state of Slovakia's health care sector showed in mid-October.

Just over 51 percent do not trust the minister at all or rather distrust him, according to the poll conducted by the MVK agency, and 37.8 percent definitely trust or rather trust him, the SITA newswire wrote.

Almost one in three Slovaks polled mentioned the level of health care in Slovakia among the country's three most significant problems. Health care ranked fifth overall on the list of problems, behind high living costs, the growing gap between rich and poor, unemployment and crime.

More than 20 percent of respondents said the biggest problems in the health sector right now are expensive medicine and high patient payments for drugs. About 16 percent mentioned the ministry's health policy and more than 12 percent said hospitals' technical equipment.

The poll also asked for opinions on the petition to keep more than one health insurer in Slovakia. Almost 50 percent of the respondents agreed with the petition and more than 38 percent were opposed to the idea.

Half of the respondents said the Labour Code needs to be revised again to improve the functioning of the health sector, but more than 30 percent were undecided.

One of the survey's questions was dedicated to alternative medicine. The most trusted method was acupuncture, followed by homeopathy. The least trusted, according the survey, are chiropractors.

The public opinion poll by MVK surveyed a representative sample of 1,101 adults in Slovakia.

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