The Conference of Academic Hospitals in Belgium (CHAB), which coordinates and defends the 7 university hospitals in Belgium (CHU Liège, Erasme, St-Luc, UZ Brussels, Leuven, Ghent and Antwerp) expressed concern at the project "hospital networks" was the subject of an agreement the day before between the federal government and federated entities.
Chantal De Boevere, general coordinator and CHAB spokesman said that several important issues are not addressed in the plan of public health minister Maggie De Blocks and there is a real risk of losing sight of the goal. Improving patient care, which should be at the heart of the reform, she insists.
"We think the government must provide a clear signal," concludes Chantal De Boevere. A clear signal to place in the center of concern, an improvement of care for the benefit of the patient, which can not be seen as a simple economic variable. But also a clear signal to take into account the specific academic hospitals, which seem to be afraid to see their skills, reference in over-regional care, diluted in front of networks whose ambitions would grow when and when alliances are done, she explains. "It is clear in the field that some networking structures believe that now they can" do everything themselves, "she says." We are concerned about research and quality. "
University hospitals have a "reference function" to be fulfilled at the level of supraregional care, they said in a statement. This supra-regional care is the more specialized or specialized care that will not be available automatically in each of the 25 "local regional" networks, these networks of hospitals that must have a geographic base and ensure basic quality care for every citizen.
"While networking was primarily aimed at optimizing quality of care (such as maternity leave and children), discussions focused on the field, especially on third-party medicine such as radiotherapy, cardiac procedures and pet scan," concerns CHAB. However, it is interesting to maintain some supraregional care in an academic context (CHAB cites "stem cell transplantation, radiotherapy and complex radiosurgery, PET-CT and PET-NMR") for issues of concentration of competence (and costs) and links to the research assignment specific for these university hospitals, emphasizes Belgium's conference for academic hospitals.