Labour supporters oppose doctor choice restrictions

doctor euros healthcare costOpposition to cabinet plans to allow health insurance companies to restrict patient choice of doctors is growing within the ruling Labour party, broadcaster Nos says on Friday.

At the end of last year, three Labour senators voted against the legislation, forcing health minister Edith Schippers to make revisions.

The issue is on the agenda for this weekend’s Labour party conference and a number of motions have been put forward, Nos says.

The local Amsterdam-Zuid party is poised to put forward a motion in which freedom of choice remains complete and guaranteed ‘whatever the type of policy’. At least 10 other local parties support this.

Health insurers are currently required by law to pay up to 70% of the cost of treatment even if they don’t have a contract with the provider. However, they want to scrap this provision for cheaper policies.


Labour party members are also angry that the cabinet has threatened to force through the measure without parliamentary approval if senators reject it a second time.

Research for television current affairs show EenVandaag showed some 75% of PvdA members oppose Schippers’ legislation and 80% said they backed the senators’ refusal to vote in favour.

Labour is part of the ruling coalition together with the right-wing Liberal VVD.

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