The State Duma didn’t support the introduction of compulsory insurance for medical workers

2021-02-26

The legal department of the State Duma did not support a draft law on providing compulsory insurance to all medical workers whose activities are associated with potential threat to their health and life.

At the moment, Law No. 323-FZ “On the Basics of Citizens Health Protection” does not provide for compulsory insurance of all categories of doctors who risk their lives at work. According to the decree of the President of the Russian Federation, only employees of medical organizations who work with COVID-19 can count on additional payments. The authors of the amendments proposed to supplement the law with an article obliging to insure all health workers whose work is potentially dangerous to their health and life. The amount of insurance payments, according to the amendments, was set at the level of military personnel, employees of the internal affairs bodies, the fire service, the Federal Penitentiary Service and the National Guard. It also provided for compensation for the costs of medical, social and professional rehabilitation of medical workers injured at the workplace.

It would seem that healthcare workers working with HIV or hepatitis are at risk no less than those who come into contact with coronavirus patients. But the State Duma considered that the proposal raises too many questions and difficulties. Firstly, the Duma lawyers suggested that the legislators should define more precisely what type of compulsory insurance is referred to in the amendments. Secondly, it’s not clear who will determine the severity of injuries and compare them with the amount of insurance payments and the cost of rehabilitation caused difficulties.

Put simply, the proposal to additionally support the doctors was broken by bureaucratic inconsistencies that mask the unwillingness to take additional obligations.

The source did not specify whether these proposals will be refined or they were simply rejected. But the situation itself shows us the attitude of the Russian bourgeoisie to health care. It is unprofitable for the ruling elite of the country and there is no point in expecting instant super-profits in this industry. And this is why capitalists do not intend to make long-term infusions into national healthcare – their wallets are much more important to them.

To make doctors’ work more respected, it is necessary to reorient the system from squeezing profits out of everything in the world to real concern for the welfare of workers.