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The Protector of Citizens believes that the Draft Law on Amendments to the Law on Health Insurance contains significant, necessary and innovative solutions for improving the quality of health insurance in Serbia, and upholds the proposed amendments to the existing law.

In the Opinion submitted to the Ministry of Health two days ago, the Protector of Citizens especially commended certain amendments to existing law, particularly the provision that people working in the territory of the Republic of Serbia are granted the status of insurance beneficiaries for a foreign citizen who does not have a registered activity in the Republic of Serbia, where they receive compensation, and are not insured on another ground. Furthermore, the proposed amendments to the Law also give that category of persons the opportunity to exercise the right to a financial allowance in case of illness or complications related to sustaining pregnancy.

Namely, the Protector of Citizens’ practice suggests that people permanently employed with a non-resident, on jobs carried out in Serbia, who duly pay contributions pursuant to the provisions of the Law on Mandatory Social Security Insurance, have so far not been able to exercise the right to salary compensation during maternity leave at the expense of compulsory health insurance funds, because they are registered in the system as if they were working abroad.

Furthermore, in previous years regarding gender equality, the Protector of Citizens’ attention was brought to the violations of rights to financial compensation for pregnancy leave, maternity leave and child-care leave, the rights of pregnant and nursing mothers; therefore the Protector of Citizens expresses satisfaction that the new solutions included in the Draft Law are oriented to facilitating the exercise of rights of the insured, with special focus on the rights of pregnant women, people with disabilities and other sensitive social groups.

The Protector of Citizens also commends the amendment to the Article 85 of the Law on Health Insurance which is defined under Article 18 of the Draft Law and stipulates the measures of supporting maternity to entrepreneurs and freelance artists.