After a consultation with the Ministry of Health, almost all consultative partners from the healthcare sector signed the Integral Care Agreement on Friday. That reports the ministry Friday night. Only the National Association of General Practitioners (LHV), whose support is necessary for the success of the agreement, stayed away from the consultation in protest and so did not sign. Before agreeing, the LHV wants concrete agreements on, among other things, rates for emergency care in the evening and night hours. If they do not sign, it is unclear whether the Integral Care Agreement can be implemented.

    The care agreement must provide for better and more efficient organization of care over the next four years. It should also ensure that more employees in the sector do not resign. The focus is on increased cooperation between regions and care domains, strengthening primary care and a focus on prevention and appropriate care. Earlier in the day it was already announced that the elderly care party Actiz and the sector organization for home care Zorgthuisnl were going to sign the agreement.

    Fourteen organizations

    A total of fourteen organizations spoke to Minister of Health Ernst Kuipers (D66). The parties agreed on Friday to continue to consult with each other every three months about the implementation of the agreement.

    “Doing nothing is not an option. If we want to maintain warm and loving care for those who really need it, we have to make difficult choices,” said Minister for Long-term Care Conny Helder (VVD). “The fact that we can now make those choices together with the healthcare field and the municipalities is a great step.” Kuipers also responded positively to the agreements made on Friday. „[De] Negotiations were not always easy and some parties still have concerns about implementation,” said the health minister. “I understand those concerns, but I have full confidence that we can embark on this new course with the signatories.”

    The cabinet actually wanted to finalize the agreement before Budget Day next Tuesday, but the question is whether that will be possible without a signature from the general practitioners.

    Also read: Signature or no signature? The parties mainly want guarantees about the care agreement