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Poll shows demand for cuts in health costs

Four-fifths of Swiss residents want to see urgent savings in health costs but are unwilling to accept cuts affecting themselves, says a poll released on Thursday.

The most popular ideas were to limit the number of prescriptions and the number of expensive treatments used by top-end medicine, as well as to cut the price of medicines and reduce the number of pharmacies.

But people are not in favour of paying a fee when they go to see their doctor, according to the survey, which was conducted for santésuisse, the umbrella organisation of health insurance companies.

They are willing to accept restrictions on their choice of doctor, but only if they are allowed to choose this option in return for a reduction in health insurance premiums.

However, the survey, which polled 1,201 respondents aged 15-74 in all parts of the country, showed that people are not in favour of a radical change in the healthcare system.

Rising health costs have become a public concern in Switzerland with premiums for compulsory health insurance expected to increase by an average 15 per cent this year.

Parliament will tackle the issue during the session which begins later this month.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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