A healthcare think-tank, the Health Policy Institute (HPI), has released its annual rating of Slovak health insurance companies for 2008 which ranks private health insurer Zdravotná Poisťovňa Dôvera as the best.
State health insurer Všeobecná zdravotná Poisťovňa (VšZP) performed worst, the SITA newswire wrote. In a repeat of last year’s ratings, Dôvera was granted an A rating and VšZP a D rating.
Zdravotná Poisťovňa Union, another private insurer came in second, also with an A rating, followed by the third private insurer, Apollo, with a C rating and state insurer Spoločná Zdravotná Poisťovňa (SZP) with a C rating. Only Apollo’s evaluation worsened, whereas SZP’s improved.
"Zdravotná Poisťovňa Dôvera received the best rating in a majority of areas. The health insurer could therefore be considered to be the market leader," said HPI analyst Angelika Szalayová. The institute evaluated seven areas: financial stability, operational processes, business profile, relations with healthcare providers, quality of services provided to policyholders, customer service and satisfaction of policyholders. "In comparison with last year, we fine-tuned the methodology and took into consideration many more criteria," said Szalayová.
The director general of the health department of the Health Ministry, Adam Hochel, disputed the outcome of the rating. He claims that the results of the rating were manipulated. He said many parameters are not as significant as they appeared to be in the rating, while some, which are of real significance, were underestimated. He said he considers the rating an advertisement for the private health insurance sector. HPI pointed out that both state-run health insurers were unwilling to participate in the rating. HPI started evaluating Slovak health insurers last year. However, some important indicators, such as waiting lists, patient management, overdue accounts and securing access to healthcare, were not included in the evaluation due to ambiguous methodology. SITA
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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