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State actors in health policy
Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic (Ministerstvo zdravotnictví České republiky)
This is the Central governmental authority on health and public health policies.
This Ministry consists of six sections focused on organizational and personal matters, economic and managerial matters, legislation and laws, health care, health insurance, and public health support and protection.
There is no special department or unit for youth issues in general. There is only the Unit on nutrition hygiene, subjects of common use, children and adolescents, under the Department for the protection of public health.
Among those, we can find three state administration bodies, the Inspectorate of Spa and springs, the inspectorate of narcotics and psychotropic substances, and the Chief hygienist.
There are a further 14 regional Hygiene stations responsible for public health issues in regions including the field of hygiene for children and adolescents, University Hospitals, Hospitals, Children Hospitals, public undertaking at Spas, various institutes, coordination centres, the State Health Institute and the national medical educational institute.
Main state Agencies
The National Institute of Public Health (NIPH) (Státní zdravotní ústav, SZÚ)
This is a healthcare establishment for basic preventive disciplines - hygiene, epidemiology, microbiology and occupational medicine. Its main tasks are health promotion and protection, disease prevention and follow-up of environmental impact on the health status of the population. The Institute was established by the Act no. 258/2000, Article 86.
The main activities of NIPH comprise:
- Science and research
- Reference and methodological advice
- Providing expert opinions on the health safety of various products (e.g. cosmetics, food supplements, items of daily use etc.)
- Systematic monitoring of the environmental impact on the population's health in the Czech Republic
- Preparation of legislation in the field of health protection, including harmonisation of Czech legislation with the norms of the European Union
- In the field of health promotion and disease prevention, NIPH concentrates on the most important health problems – epidemiological surveillance of severe infections (AIDS, hepatitis, newly emerging and re-emerging infections)
- Promotion of a healthy lifestyle (prevention of cardiovascular diseases and tumours, healthy nutrition, drug abuse prevention)
- The Institute plays an active role in under- and postgraduate training of physicians and other healthcare workers and provides consultations to professionals working in the field
Institute of Health Information and Statistics of the Czech Republic (Ústav zdravotnických informací a statistiky ČR)
This was established in 1960 and it is an organisational component of the State, its founder was the Ministry of Health.
The National Health Information System (further on 'NHIS') is defined in Act no. 372/2011 Sb., on health services and conditions of their provision (Act on health services)
Administration of the NHIS is delegated by the Ministry of Health to the Institute in accordance with the basic purpose and objective of its activity that follows from the Statute of the Institute.
The Institute is a component of the State Statistical Service (according to the competence act) and performs this activity according to Act no. 89/1995 Sb., on state statistical service.
It cooperates with organs of the State Statistical Service, mainly with the Czech Statistical Office, it secures the connection between NHIS and individual health care providers, and it cooperates with the operators of information systems of other organisations in and out of the health sector.
The Institute will continue to follow the principles of the European Statistics Code of Practice with the aim of securing the high quality and credibility of European data.
The Institute cooperates with associations of hospitals, associations of physicians, professional medical societies, health insurance companies and other organisations, particularly on precise specifications of the NHIS contents and on the utilisation of the collected data.
On the international level of health statistics, the Institute cooperates particularly with the WHO, OECD, the UN, EUROSTAT and other organisations. The Institute is the official presenter of NHIS data for the Czech Republic.
National Sports Agency (Národní sportovní agentura)
It was established since 1st of August 2019. It is a central state agency with own budget chapter for the field of sport.
Since 2021 will be responsible for state financing of sports activities until that is the competence still by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports.
The main aim is to support relevant conditions for sports development and increasing the sports activity of Czech citizens with the focus on Children.
Self-governed actors in the health policy
In the scope of self-governed actors in the health policy, regions and municipalities are out of the state administration's scope and have delegated competencies and responsibilities for the Health of their inhabitants.
Further professional Chambers are important and specific self-governed actors.
The Act no. 220/1991 Sb. establishes these Chambers. All autonomous working experts and even employees in fields of medicine, pharmacy, and dental medicine have to be members of these professional chambers according to the Act. All Czech professional chambers in the health system have a dual function - representing the interests of the members as well as having control over them, which is a competence under delegated powers of the state to the chambers.
The Czech Medical Chamber (Česká lékařská komora)
The Czech Pharmacy Chamber (Česká lékárnická komora)
It is interesting is that in 2011 an independent Civic Association 'Young Pharmacists' was created with the goal of changing the setting of the Chamber.
Czech Dental Chamber (Česká stomatologická komora)
Main tasks of the professional chambers:
- Expertise and ensuring professional standards and quality
- Representation of members and advocacy of their rights
- Setting up conditions for creating one's own practice in the field
- Disciplinary proceedings against members
- They are entitled to negotiate the tariffs for public health insurance
- Commenting entities on legal matters in their fields
- Education of members
- Public information activities
- Possibility of protests
State administration in the health policy is partially decentralised in Regions, Municipalities with delegated powers of the state, and municipalities (towns, cities).
Regions are responsible for regional health policy (establishing special health facilities, their registration, operation, regional distribution of health services, purchases of specialised medical equipment, etc.)
Municipalities and towns support the development of local medical care, are responsible for the accessibility of the medical care, organise first aid services and other relevant emergency services within the municipality.
In the Youth Chamber, (see details in Chapter 1.4) the representatives of the Department of directly managed organisations represent the Ministry of Health.
There is a strong tradition of the Children medicine taking care also about young people up to 18 years of age. Children medicine has a rich system of professional and representatives bodies represented also in state coordination bodies.