Four in ten general hospitals in Belgium are losing money

Wednesday, 10 October 2018 23:58
Four in ten general hospitals in Belgium are losing money © pixabay
Four out of ten general hospitals in Belgium, whether public or private, is operating in the red, according to a study by Belfius bank.
The category excludes institutions like plastic surgery clinics, psychiatric hospitals and eye and dental specialist units. The study covers 92 hospitals.

A similar study one year ago showed a total of 30% in the red, with 24 hospitals showing a negative cash flow. This year the number has risen to 39 institutions.

“The sector is like the Titanic heading for the iceberg,” commented Geert Gielens, chief economist at Belfius.

And the coming years promise if anything to be more difficult in the area of financing which affects everyday operations but also longer-term organisation. Problems on the horizon include the greying of the population (older people take up a disproportionate amount of resources compared to their numbers), continuing digitalisation and the advance of medical techniques.

Federal health minister Maggie De Block, herself a qualified medical practitioner, said she had “taken all the necessary steps, often in the face of much opposition”. In 2015, she said, she predicted the decline of hospital finances, and introduced a series of measures intended to combat the effect.

“To adapt the hospital sector to the needs of the patient and still remain financially sound, a fundamental reform was required.”

The hospitals took in €14.5 billion in 2007, an increase of 2.7% on the previous year. Pharmaceutical charges increased by over 11%, largely because of new drugs for immunology and cancer treatments. At the same time, staff costs went up by 3.7%.

Alan Hope
The Brussels Times

Google Plus

More Stories

Speed checks: less than 3% of drivers found to be driving too fast

Speed checks: less than 3% of drivers found to be driving too fast

The institute Vias, and the police, indicated on Friday that less than 3% of drivers speed checked on Wednesday and Thursday were found to be driving too fast.

Vlaams Belang takes defamation proceedings against Flemish Greens leader

Vlaams Belang takes defamation proceedings against Flemish Greens leader

The Mediahuis publications are reporting on Friday that Vlaams Belang are pressing charges against, Meyrem Almaci, the leader of Groen (the Flemish Green party), for defamation after she described the far-right party as “racist”, during a parliamentary debate.

Restaurant turns away families with children – justified or not?

Restaurant turns away families with children – justified or not?

The food service industry and the dining public were split into two factions this week, after news that a restaurant in the seaside resort of Nieuwpoort had turned away a mother and child.