Het is altijd heerlijk te lezen dat je in het paradijs woont. En nuttig om te lezen hoe een Nederlander zijn gedachten in het buitenland uitlegt aan de onwetenden. Minister Klink, die gister en vandaag zijn begroting verdedigt in de Kamer, in een vraaggesprek met The New York Times:
Q. THERE SEEMS LITTLE DOUBT THAT POOR PEOPLE GET BETTER CARE IN THE NETHERLANDS THAN HERE. BUT DO THE MIDDLE-CLASS AND RICH IN THE UNITED STATES GET BETTER CARE?
A. The Dutch health care system offers top quality. We have some famous institutions in our country. So I do think we have a high standard of quality, and it’s open for everyone. And if there is a fear that the rationing of care would lower quality, what I have tried to indicate is that we are not rationing anymore. It’s all negotiable. And I’m quite sure that if someone could offer a high standard of quality which is even better than we have at this moment, the insurance companies would, if needed, pay more.
En zouden wij topziekenhuizen zoals des Mayo Clinic kwijtraken als wij uw systeem van gezondheidszorg invoerden, vroeg de Times-verslaggever?
I cannot tell you that Dutch hospitals are better than the Mayo Clinic or Johns Hopkins. Probably it’s the other way around. That’s why we’re visiting them. But it’s not because this kind of quality would not be allowed in our system. We would love the Mayo to open a hospital in the Netherlands.
Q. BUT IS THERE SOME QUALITY IN THE UNITED STATES THAT HAS LED TO THE CREATION OF SUCH TOP-FLIGHT HOSPITALS?
A. If you look at Kaiser Permanente or the Mayo Clinic, it’s important to note that they were both started by people who really cared about patients and instilled a culture to offer the best health care possible, and they were able to keep this culture for many decades. And as far as I’m informed, prices in these institutions are not that different than those in other institutions or those in Holland. So I don’t think the fundamental aspect of these institutions has to do with the liberal climate in your country.
En hoe zorgt u dat zulke topklinieken bij u ontstaan?
What I do not want is the rationing of care and what we call budgeting. So that hospitals get a certain amount of money, and there is no incentive for them to innovate. Because the aging of our society is a major threat for health systems in the future. Many people will want and receive health care, but if there is a shortage of labor, and demand will rise, so prices will go up enormously.
That’s the main reason we tried to change the system and why innovation is so important. Without it, there won’t be enough doctors or nurses, because competing parts of the economy will pay more.
PS> Lees in de reacties hoe een Nederlander het medische beloofde land ontvluchtte.