Bosnia Medical Insurance
Bosnia is situated in the Southeastern part of Europe on the Balkan Peninsula. It is located between Croatia, Serbia, and Montenegro. The country has a total area of 51,129 square kilometers. Bosnia shares boundaries with Croatia on the North, South and West, Serbia and Montenegro on the East, and the Adriatic Sea on the South. The capital city of Bosnia is Sarajevo, which is located near the center of the country. Bosnia was formerly a part of Yugoslavia but it gained its independence in 1992 during the Yugoslav wars.
The climate in Bosnia includes hot summers and cold winters. As the attitude increases, the summers become shorter and cooler, while winters are longer and severely cold. On the other hand, winters along the coast tend to be mild, short, and rainy. The mean temperature in July and January is around 22.5°C and 0°C respectively. Bosnia is a country that has a lot to offer, including age-old cultures, historical and Roman architectural buildings, stunning mountain landscapes, and access to some great adventurous outdoor activities, e.g. white water rafting, kayaking, hiking, and skiing.
The State healthcare system in Bosnia is highly decentralised. The Ministry of Health of Bosnia together with ten health departments are responsible for the primary and secondary healthcare of the country. The Ministry of Health of Bosnia is responsible for coordinating departmental healthcare administrations at the Federation level.
Under the public healthcare system of Bosnia, a Federal Health Insurance Fund was set up to control and supervise the mandatory insurance funds collected in the health departments. Each of the 10 departments collects contributions for the central health insurance fund. The Government of Bosnia is the main contributor, who contributes about 54% to the insurance fund. Their contribution is to support the unemployed, pensioners and any vulnerable groups. Other groups in Bosnia who contribute towards the insurance fund include 30% from employers and employees and 16% from the taxation on incomes of farmers. Extra funding is received from patients paying for part of their medical treatments costs and for their medications.
Primary healthcare in Bosnia is provided through health centres and health stations (known as ambulantas). Health Centres are owned by the municipal Governments, and they provide primary healthcare, preventive healthcare, health education, and rehabilitation. Some of the medical services that health centres provide include general practice, maternity care, child healthcare, and dental care. Health centres are staffed with general practitioners and nurses. Ambulantas are outpatient clinics, which are staffed with general practitioners (GP), specialist doctors, dentists, and community health nurses. Sometimes ambulantas are attached to a health centre, other times they are run as private practices. People living in the urban areas or in the cities tend to use ambulantas more often. There are more specialist doctors staffed in ambulantas, and services in ambulantas tend to be more expensive.
Hospitals in Bosnia provide both inpatients and outpatients emergency care and treatments to the population. Under normal circumstances, patients are required to receive referral from a GP in order to be admitted into the hospital, unless it is in the case of an emergency, then no doctor referral is needed. There are four types of hospitals available in Bosnia, namely clinical centres, general acute hospitals, specialised hospitals and small district hospitals. Hospital Management is known to be poor in Bosnia as there is a lack of trained personnel in the hospitals. Moreover, there is also a shortage in technical systems in the hospitals to assist in hospital administration. In Bosnia, private hospital and private ambulantas are available in the country, and both of them are profit-making institutions. Patients who choose to visit these practices for medical treatments are required to make out-of-pocket payments or put in place a private medical insurance plan to cover expenses.
Both State-run and private pharmacies are available in Bosnia. The State of Bosnia draws up a list of reimbursable essential drugs, which are reimbursed by the State pharmacies. Private pharmacies do not receive reimbursement from the State fund. In general, drugs in Bosnia are expensive and prices may vary enormously, patients may need to search retail pharmacies for lower priced drugs.
There are a number of issues within the healthcare system of Bosnia. The healthcare in Bosnia is extremely under-funded. Given that the set up of the Bosnian healthcare system is extremely decentralised, a large portion of the health budget is spent on the administration of the system instead of focusing on the medical treatments. Moreover, it can be difficult to collect insurance fund contributions within a decentralised system. There are shortages of medical professionals in the country. Many good doctors have left Bosnia during the war, and the ones who stayed behind in the country were lacking in skills and they are not very well-trained. At that time, political and ethnic relationships were at a much higher priority than doctors’ professional skills.
Moreover, the medical professionals in the country are poorly motivated due to their low salary level and little potential for career advancement. There is no suitable information technology system set up to link between the health insurance institutions, the public health institutions, and healthcare facilities. Inequality exist within the healthcare system as corruption is severe, patients are willing to pay under-the-table payments to exchange for immediate medical treatment or attention from doctors and nurses.
Pacific Prime is a one-stop insurance brokerage service provider for you when travelling to Bosnia. We offer a wide range of policies to meet your individual needs, including benefits such as dental, maternity, inpatient, outpatient, specialist consultations, and many others. We offer a large variety of healthcare plans, Contact our professional advisers today to enjoy full insurance protection such as an Health Insurance Plan for yourself and your family.