Doc­tors shift on card pay­ments

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

The Athens Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion (ISA) ap­peared to scale down its ob­jec­tions to a gov­ern­ment pro­posal that pa­tients pay for their vis­its by credit or debit card, as part of a plan to crack down on tax eva­sion, de­scrib­ing talks yesterday with Al­ter­nate Fi­nance Min­is­ter Try­fon Alex­i­adis as “pro­duc­tive.”

Doc­tors had ob­jected to the pro­posed mea­sure, claim­ing that it would add to their costs and could vi­o­late the pri­vacy of med­i­cal records. They also ar­gued that el­derly pa­tients are not fa­mil­iar with the use of credit cards.

ISA tem­pered its stance, which pro­voked wide­spread crit­i­cism, af­ter the min­istry pro­posed so­lu­tions to tackle con­cerns. It pro­posed ne­go­ti­a­tions be­tween doc­tors and banks to re­duce the cost of im­ple­ment­ing the new sys­tem. To over­come pri­vacy con­cerns, it pro­posed that each doc­tor be is­sued with a spe­cial code which will be used in all their trans­ac­tions. It is likely that some cat­e­gories of pa­tients, such as the el­derly, will be granted ex­emp­tion.

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