Prague 1. March 2007 – The Czech Oncological Society ČLS JEP (COS) released today the contents of an Agreement of Understanding with the General Health Insurance Company (VZP). The document, signed by Jiří Vorlíček, President of ČOS, and Pavel Horák, Director of VZP, summarizes the outcome of Monday talks of the two parties on reimbursement limits for oncological treatment and at the same time commits VZP to conclude legally binding contracts with particular health care institutions at the latest by 31. March 2007. This step should assure the reimbursement of expensive oncological treatment for all patients where it is effective and rational. The contracts are to be updated at least every year so that they respond to the demographic data of patients in the Czech Republic. Technically and financially demanding treatment shall be concentrated in Complex Oncology Centres (COC) and shall be provided on the principle “the right treatment to the right patient” with the aim of rational spending of means for therapy as expensive oncological treatment is not appropriate for every patient. VZP committed itself in the Agreement to finance treatment of current COC patients as well as those patients that turn to the COCs in the course of the year. It is important to highlight in this respect the importance of oncologists working outside the COCs. “It is they who evaluate oncological diseases of individual patients and while composing treatment strategy send patients fulfilling the given criteria to the COCs where provision of expensive treatment is centralized,” said Professor Vorlíček.
The estimates of numbers of patients that are to be treated by a certain therapy in a given year are made on the basis of data from the National Oncological Register and demographic data on population of the Czech Republic. Professional team conducting these analyses is led by the Institute of Biostatistics and Analyses of Masaryk University in Brno, which guarantees the development and running of the national portal on tumour epidemiology in the CR. The basic data on incidence (number of new cases officially recorded in the population in a given time period) and mortality (the ratio of deaths in population observed in a defined time period) for all tumour illnesses is publicly available on the portal www.svod.cz. “In this way established estimates should contribute to the adjustment of health insurance plans of health insurance companies,” emphasized Prof. Vorlíček.
COS is determined to provide patients, their families and friends with the maximum amount of information related to oncological illnesses. “In daily praxis the aspiration of the patient to learn more about the disease often collides with heavy workload of doctors at ambulances and most of all with the inability of the patient to apprehend the information provided in stressful environment of a medical facility,” explained Professor Vorlíček. The work of COS members has resulted in a new section of www.linkos.cz web pages devoted to general public. It concentrates at one place detailed and professionally guaranteed information on diagnoses, treatment options, oncology centres, treatises, statistics on incidence of tumour diseases and psychologist’s assistance. The section also deals with prevention, draws attention among other things to healthy life style and introduces the programme of preventive checks. The internet source of information on cancer will be publicised through posters and cards freely available in surgeries and waiting rooms of oncological workplaces. “I am proud of the fact that the COS has succeeded in building an exceptionally complex source of information, and I can only invite you to visit www.linkos.cz/pacienti,” summarized Professor Vorlíček.