Slovakia's health care worsened in 2018

Patients criticised referral slips, which they need to see a specialist.

F.D.Roosevelt University Hospital in Banská BystricaF.D.Roosevelt University Hospital in Banská Bystrica (Source: Sme)

Although health care in Slovakia is the second best in central Europe after the Czech Republic, the country dropped in the the Euro Health Consumer Index (EHCI), published by the Health Consumer Powerhouse organisation.

The country ranked 17th, down by four places compared to 2017, the SITA newswire reported.

Read also:FAQ: Health care treatment in Slovakia Read more 

Strong & weak sides

Slovakia collected 722 points, which is less than in the previous index, but it fared well, the authors of the index claimed.

However, Slovak patients were more critical, especially when it came to the availability of specialists and the requirement to get a referral slip from a general practitioner to see the specialists, SITA wrote.

On the other hand, the availability of general practitioners is the best in the European Union. Moreover, Slovakia obtained a very positive evaluation when it came to the number of abortions.

However, it did post poor results in other indicators, including the length of life in for patients with oncological diseases, the number of new MRSA cases, the number of cataract surgeries of patients over 65 years and of kidney transplantation. Slovakia is also struggling to fight smoking and the lack of physical activities performed by Slovaks, as reported by SITA.

Record-high visits

Read also:Slovakia scored worse in health care than Pakistan Read more 

Although some would say small corruption in health care is high, Slovak patients described it as occasional. Most Europeans refuse small bribes or give these bribes regularly, especially in Albania, Hungary and Bulgaria.

In addition, Slovak patients belong to those visiting a doctor the most often in the EU: 11 times a year. Hungarians top this indicator with 12 visits a year, SITA reported.

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