The health insurance and the first union of liberal physiotherapists announced on Friday the signing of an agreement that provides 530 million euros in extra expenses per year in exchange for screwing up the freedom to install these carers.
The negotiations lasted almost a year. The time to suspend discussions in the spring and then resume them during the summer. And finally, just before Christmas, Sygesikringen can congratulate itself on a “historic change” to the physiotherapists’ national convention.
“Enhanced regulation” on installations
The amount is in fact significantly higher than previous agreements with this industry: 530 million euros for price increases, new procedures reimbursed (disabled children, loss of autonomy) and a revision of the support for installation in “very poor areas”.
A significant framework, offset by “enhanced regulation” of their installation, while the workforce has increased 20% in six years – 61,000 in 2015, almost 73,000 today, Secu specifies. In order to “reduce the very strong inequalities in access to physiotherapy treatment”, the so-called “non-priority” areas, where the one-arrival-one-departure rule prevails, will be extended to an area covering 30% of the population, compared to 22% currently.
A “breath of hope”
Future students leaving school from 2028 must also spend the two years after their diploma in employment (hospitals, nursing homes) or in the most deprived areas. The only signatory to this “long-awaited” agreement – the other two unions refused after consulting their members – FFMKR estimates in a press release that the half a billion obtained “gives the hoped-for breath of fresh air” after “ten years of tariff freeze”.
The first organization of the profession takes on the new restrictions on the installation, seeing in it “a strong signal directed to patients and (to) political actors”, a few weeks before the consideration of a bill on “access directly”, therefore without a medical prescription , for several health professions including physiotherapists.