The Balearic government is unhappy about distribution of funds for health services.

28-04-2020Miquel À. Cañellas

The Spanish government is due to distribute 16,000 million euros of aid to the regions. Of this, 10,000 million euros are from a fund for regional health services and the spending these have had to make because of the coronavirus pandemic. The Balearics are set to receive only 150 million of this 10,000 million, a sum which is half the amount the regional government had itself allocated in the form of emergency funding for the health service.

The other 6,000 million euros are split between 1,000 million for "social recovery" and 5,000 million to compensate for loss of regional revenues. The Balearic finance ministry's estimate of this loss in 2020 is 500 million. The government would therefore need to receive ten per cent of this compensation fund, and this will not be the case.

The regional government doesn't agree with how the funds are being allocated or with the amounts that Madrid is making available. President Armengol has called for the compensation fund to be doubled to 10,000 million. The regional finance minister, Rosario Sánchez, wants the national finance minister, María Jesús Montero, to change the criteria for fund distribution. Where the health service fund is concerned, these give weightings of 28% to population, 33% to intensive care admissions, 23% to overall hospital admissions, and 16% to tests that have proved positive.

The regional government believes that more weight should be given to population, while account should be taken of efforts made by the health service's primary care to avoid patients having to be admitted to hospital. In the Balearics, there has been increased spending on primary care. This has meant a lower cost for hospitals and intensive care, but compensation is needed for the primary care investment.

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