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Initial list of pharmaceuticals available on GHS published

May 28, 2019 at 3:08pm
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The Health Insurance Organisation has published the provisional list of pharmaceuticals that will be available under the General Health Scheme (GHS) the first phase of which will be implemented on June 1.

There are currently more than 1000 pharmaceuticals on the list and will be updated once pharmaceutical companies inform the HIO that they can make other medicine available.

Speaking to the Cyprus News Agency, the deputy general manager of the HIO Athos Tsinintides said that the pharmaceuticals on the list are those currently on sale in the private sector.

Pharmaceuticals used for expensive treatments which beneficiaries currently obtain from state hospitals do not appear on the list and beneficiaries will continue to obtain them from there.

See the full catalogue with the pharmaceuticals here.

The new system will usher in a number of changes.

Changes for patients

  • Over the counter pharmaceuticals will remain outside the system. This means patients will have to pay for them out of pocket
  • There will be a prescription fee of €1. Patients who not want the generic pharmaceutical prescribed, can opt to buy a more expensive brand pharmaceutical and cover the difference in price
  • If there is no generic the GHS will fully cover the brand pharmaceutical
  • GHS participants will not need to pay anything for medicine administered while in hospital
  • The GHS will fully cover innovative medicine
  • The GHS will fully cover the medicine prescribed by a doctor, even if there is a generic
  • If the doctor is not part of the GHS, patients will have to pay for the medicine
  • In the event of a chronic illness, doctors can give a prescription valid for six months so as not to inconvenience the patient. However the patient can only collect a month’s supply at a time from the pharmacy.

For pharmacists

  • Pharmacists will have to brief GHS participants about their options so that they can choose the medicine fully paid for by the GHS or choose a more expensive one and cover the difference in price
  • Pharmacists will be paid additionally for services over the weekend, on holidays and for the night shift. They will receive €70 for the night shift on week days, €100 for Saturdays and €200 for Sundays and holidays.
  • Pharmacists will be offered incentives of €25,000 to share facilities
  • Pharmacists will be offered incentives of €25,000 to set up operation in the mountains and in remote areas.
  • Pharmacists will be paid by medicine sold. They will be paid by the state health organisation every 15 days in the first two months of the implementation of the GHS to ensure liquidity
  • For prescriptions that do not concern the GHS, pharmacists will be able to charge patients up to €5
  • Pharmacists will continue to serve non-GHS patients as they do now
  • Guarantees were given in the event of losses incurred if pharmaceuticals expire
  • A request from pharmacists that they be able to carry out vaccinations at private pharmacies is under consideration