2 of 3 doctors fed-up with Dutch system; insurer supports reform

Two thirds of the 11 thousand doctors in the Netherlands have had enough of the unending amount of administrative work they have to deal with every day for the health insurance companies. They feel this takes time that they could have spent with patients and that something must be done.

These doctors, united under Het Roer Moet Om, or It Must Change in English, have handed a manifesto to the Tweede Kamer, lower house of parliament, asking that something be done. In the manifesto, which has been singed by more than 7,800 doctors, they call on Minister Edith Schippers of Public Health and health insurers to take measures to reduce the amount of bureaucracy.

"Due to insurance companies' chronic excessive control drift, we as practitioners suffer from excessive bureaucracy. Along with the patient, we must complete endless lists every year. It is driving us crazy." Mai Neijens, a general practitioner in Landsmeer, told Metro Nieuws.  According to Neijens, the patient is also suffering from this. "They no longer get the full attention they deserve because we as physicians must divide our attention between the checklist and the patient."

These doctors are getting support from an unexpected source - Health insurer DSW. Director Chris Oomen told radio program Rijnmond NU that DSW has signed the manifesto, RTV Rijnmond reports. "I completely agree on a number of points." He thinks that health insurers and doctors should discuss the matter, like DSW did in the region. He also believes that health insurers should collect less redundant data. "That just leads to over medication."