The 50% reduction in the price of fuel for 14 types of vehicles, which was announced by the government of Gustavo Petro, could jeopardize the budget allocated to the EPS and the health system.
The issue is very technical but, in essence, it means that many costs that were previously borne by insurers will now become the responsibility of the state and, therefore, will put even more pressure on the budget allocation for EPS, which has been steadily increasing. complained of cuts that, according to them, would put at risk not only those institutions, but the entire health system.
Expert Johnaton Garcia, a Master in Public Health from Harvard University, explains it simply: “With the reduction in the cost of the seat, insurers were not prepared to continue paying the same for accidents and for EPS, that they would pay that cost.” were not going to agree to pay what was in line with the insurers earlier. That’s where the government came in and said it would take over those costs, the general system of social security in health, pay from the resources administrator’s fund of ADRES, a A sensitive point, because it is from this institution that money comes out to pay for all health.
Prior to the source reduction, insurers were in charge of paying 800 daily minimum wages for accidents. With the reduction, vehicles which had source price reduced by 50% would be covered only up to 300 daily minimum wages. The remaining 500, equal to the salary, will be assumed by the government, if the patient requires it.
an expensive solution
So far, the measurement doesn’t seem so dramatic, but it should be translated into figures. As Petro acknowledged, these payments through ADRES could cost about 2 trillion pesos annually, a million-dollar amount that would come from the total resources allocated for EPS and, moreover, criticized by several sectors. amount less than expected (see brackets).
To understand this context, one must refer to a previous controversy by the Minister of Health, Carolina Corcho. At the end of 2022, it said it needed a 12% increase in the budget allocation for EPS, a measure that surprised the sector, as previous administrations had said an increase of at least 14 to 16%. was necessary.
Corcho’s request, then, was strange, as it meant that a minister was asking for a lower percentage than was projected for his portfolio, when usually the opposite is true: leaders ask for more budgets so that they can give them at least a good portion. Give
Thus, Corcho has given more than one argument for which she is most criticized: supposedly, she intends to push the EPS to its limits in order to eliminate them and to control the operation of the health system. To be modified, a plan that is within the Petro Govt list.
In fact, this Monday the union of EPS Acemi also assured that the government owes them more than $2.6 billion, which is affecting patient care.
For now, the government has defended the 50% reduction in the price of the sot, insisting that many more Colombians will buy the insurance given that it is at half the price.
“That would be the only way for the measure to work, as there would be more resources to subsidize the money that stops coming in. Still, reaching the end of the year looks dangerous to me, given the finances of the health system and complicating it, when it should be doing the opposite and devoting more money to that area,” García concluded.