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News Siun sote is preparing for the reform of the Act on Client Charges

Siun sote is preparing for the reform of the Act on Client Charges

The Act on Client Charges has been reformed and the amendments to the Act will enter into force on 1 July 2021. The changes affect several thousands of Siun sote customers.

The aim of the Act on Client Charges reform is to improve the equal availability and timeliness of services by removing obstacles to treatment. The legislative reform entering into force in July will, among other things, bring the fees for long-term housing services to the scope of the Act, expand the scope of services provided for free and make fees more reasonable.

New legislation on sheltered housing fees

The fees for long-term housing services are currently not regulated by law. In Siun sote, the fees have been decided by the Board of Directors of the joint municipal authority. From the beginning of July 2021, the fees for these services will also be based on legislation. The new Act on Client Charges will harmonise the fees for long-term housing services at a national level.

In the future, the Act will lay down matters such as the minimum amount of funds available for persons in long-term intensified sheltered housing or long-term family care. ‘Available funds’ refers to the amount of funds that a person should have left after making all customer payments. As a result of the legislative reform, a minimum of EUR 164 per month must be left available from the net income of customers in long-term intensified sheltered housing or family care. The minimum available funds will increase for the majority of Siun sote customers as a result of the reform.

When calculating a fee, reductions of income observed in the process include a guardian's basic fee, pharmaceutical expenses reimbursed under the Health Insurance Act, the costs of clinical nutritional products and moisturizing creams and other pharmaceutical expenses based on the prescription of a health care professional.

New payment decisions for customers of regular services

As a result of the legislative reform, the criteria for determining customer fees will change for services that are used regularly. For some services, the legislative reform requires that the customers’ current need for assistance and services be updated.

Siun sote will work with customers to update their care and service plans based on the customers’ service needs and make new payment decisions for the customers of housing services, home care, institutional care and family care. The preparation of new fee decisions is currently under way, and information on the subject has been sent to customers. The aim is to make the decisions by the end of July.

More services free of charge

The new Act on Client Charges will increase the amount of free health services. Services that are already free, such as health counselling and check-ups, screenings and maternity and child health clinic visits, will remain free of charge.

With the legislative reform, new free services include nurses’ appointments in primary health care, outpatient visits for people under the age of 18, open mental health care work in primary health care, matters related to the treatment of certain infectious diseases, such as medication intended for the prevention of HIV, and the examination, treatment and monitoring of pregnant people using intoxicants at maternity clinics.

Discounts on customer fees available when necessary

The upcoming amendment of the Act on Client Charges also aims to strengthen customers’ legal protection. The Act emphasises the fact that customers have the possibility to apply for a discount on customer fees if the fees endanger the person’s livelihood. The objective of the Act is that customers would not have to apply for social assistance in order to cope with customer fees.

More information on Siun sote customer fees: https://www.siunsote.fi/en/web/english/customer-fees