The Ministry of Social Affairs has pledged 2 million euros to connect two of the larger Estonian hospitals to smaller, regional care centers.
The purpose is to develop a skills and knowledge network and share competencies and management between the larger and smaller hospitals. The goal is to enhance the sustainability of quality-level care in all locations.
The Minister of Health and Labor, Urmas Kruuse, signed a contract with the North Estonia Regional Hospital (PERH) in Mustamäe and Tartu University Hospital on Wednesday.
PERH will become a stakeholder in the operation of the Rapla County Hospital, and the Lääne County Hospital in Haapsalu. The Tartu University Clinic will become a stakeholder in the South Estonia Hospital in Võru.
"In the summer, the government approved the development of Estonian healthcare until 2020. We set as a goal the networking of hospitals, and establish as the main competence centers of specialized health care as the Tartu University Hospital and the North Estonian Regional Hospital," Kruuse said.
"The networking helps to guarantee that there is more accessable and better quality specialized health care all across Estonia. Our doubled-up investments will go away. It is very important that hospitals will work as teams and cooperate with each other, which is beneficial for patients, doctors, hospitals, and the state," he said.
In addition to the networking of hospitals, the health care development document foresees investments into developing primary-level health-care centers, and to increase the importance of care at the family-doctor level.
Editor: S. Abel