Reformation of the public procurement will result in improved patient care in Kosovo

Prishtina, October 6, 2022  – To discuss the improvement of patient care and the routes to a more efficient medicine supply, the American Chamber of Commerce in Kosovo organized a roundtable on “Building Partnership to Improve Patient Care in Kosovo”, in which in addition to representatives of health professionals, MPs, Fatmire Kollçaku, also the Chairwoman of the Parliamentary Committee for Health and Social Welfare, and MP Bekim Haxhiu, as well as Deputy Ministers of Health, Dafina Gexha Bunjaku and Arsim Berisha, also participated.

Executive Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Kosovo, Arian Zeka, emphasized the importance of building a partnership between public healthcare institutions and the private sector with an ultimate goal of improving the patient care in Kosovo, as well as better management of public funds through more efficient procurement of pharmaceutical products.

Naim Bardiqi, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health, began the discussion by highlighting that patients’ care is the main objective of the ministry. Despite the financial challenges, laws on healthcare and health insurance are being drafted, with the intention of achieving a decent and long-term healthcare performance.

Sinisha Varga and Tihomir Strizrep, both renowned international experts in the field of healthcare, shared their expertise but also explained the reforms that Croatia undertook along the way which resulted in an admirable health system. The key to their success is mainly attributed to the so-called MEA (Managed Entry Agreement), which was also the emphasis of the roundtable.

Former Minister of Health of the Republic of Croatia, Sinisha Varga explained how a partnership through MEA works and what specifically should be considered when drafting agendas in healthcare. On the other hand, Tihomir Strizrep, besides explaining the process Croatia had to undergo towards reformation of its healthcare system, offered his recommendations and a five-point model that Kosovo ought to follow. What was a joint basis of their expertise and recommendations, is the utmost importance of having MEA in improving patient care and offering efficient services.

Lawyer Visar Ramaj introduced the perspective of laws and regulations concerning healthcare ecosystems. There are new draft laws being proposed, and the whole system is undergoing transformation. What is important to recognize is that the MEA is in accordance with Kosovo’s legal framework. In fact, such an agreement is not new, given that it took place with regards to Pfizer vaccines, hence there is nothing controversial about it. Undoubtedly, there needs to be will, courage, and integrity to push such beneficial settlements forward.