The ministers of Health and Finance are poised to sign a joint ministerial decree in in the coming period granting insured individuals the option of selecting paid afternoon surgeries within public hospitals. The announcement was made today by Minister of Health  Adonis Georgiadis during a television interview.

Presently, public hospital surgeries conclude by 3 p.m., barring emergencies. Georgiadis said existing schedule will continue but with a new provision allowing clinics to organize and perform surgeries after 3 p.m. and with a service charge tacked on.

To qualify for afternoon surgeries, hospital departments must first complete their scheduled morning surgeries. Notably, even if there is a reduction in the number of surgeries, each instance will be electronically recorded, given the introduction of an Electronic Unified Surgery List. This adjustment aims to streamline the scheduling process, diminishing the wait time in public hospitals, which can currently extend beyond two months, effectively halving the waiting period.

Regarding the costs, Georgiadis said they will be detailed in the forthcoming decree. Hospitals will adhere to standardized billing procedures for medical services, he said.

Finally, he cited the advantage offered to patients that are willing to bear the costs for less expensive, compared to private hospitals, healthcare and speedier procedures than normal in the public sector.