Summary published of comments received on the draft government proposal for the health and social services reform
A summary of comments received on the draft government proposal on the organisation of health, social and rescue services is published. Respondents welcome the objectives of the reform and agree on its necessity.
On 15 June 2020, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of the Interior requested opinions on the draft government proposal on the organisation healthcare and social welfare and rescue services. A total of 804 comments were received from municipalities, joint municipal authorities, hospital districts, rescue departments, organisations and service providers in healthcare and social welfare, among others.
Respondents agreed that the reform is necessary and that its objectives are acceptable. A majority thought that the proposal could improve people’s access to services. Most respondents maintained that the participatory rights of residents would be secured in an adequate or mostly adequate manner.
Respondents were critical of the sufficiency of funding, state guidance and direction, taking account of regional differences in service needs, social welfare’s role in the reform, and timetable challenges. They also criticised the proposals on purchased services, use of temporary agency labour and the invalidity of purchased service contracts.
The comments stressed the need to clarify the roles and duties of municipalities and wellbeing services counties. Some respondents suggested a broader definition of the role of the wellbeing services counties in the promotion of health and wellbeing. The significance of cooperation with organisations and businesses was also emphasised. Respondents also commented on the use of the term ‘health and social services counties’.
The opinions about the reform’s entry into force were strongly divided between those who were for the proposed timetable and those who were against it. According to the comments, matters such as joint information systems, the creation of the organisational structure and support services were considered to require more preparation time.
Legislative proposal to Parliament in December
The Ministerial Working Group on Health and Social Services has reviewed the comments received during the consultation round on the health and social services reform and outlined policies and made changes to the draft government proposal. The Government has submitted an amended draft legislative proposal to the Finnish Council of Regulatory Impact Analysis (FCRIA).&
The Government will finalise its legislative proposal based on feedback from FCRIA. The government proposal is due to be submitted to Parliament in December 2020.
Kari Hakari, Director General, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, tel. +358 2951 5163642, firstname.lastname(at)stm.fi Auli Valli-Lintu, Senior Ministerial Adviser, Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, tel. +358 2951 6346, firstname.lastname(at)stm.fi Jani Pitkäniemi, Director General, Ministry of Finance, tel. +358 2953 0494, firstname.lastname(at)vm.fi
Kimmo Kohvakka, Director General for Rescue Services, Ministry of the Interior, tel. +358 295 488 400, firstname.lastname(at)intermin.fi
Ilpo Helismaa, Senior Adviser for Legal Affairs, Ministry of the Interior, tel. +358 295 488 400, firstname.lastname(at)intermin.fi