There has been a big change in how healthcare is organised in the Netherlands. The state shifted a lot of its responsibilities from the national to the municipal level, in order to improve efficiency. Local government is missing a lot of the expertise needed to execute this additional workload and it needs to do so with decreased funding. Combined with the generally late response of local government, this has resulted in a fragmentation of knowledge of the Dutch healthcare system.
In consequence healthcare providers and social workers have become ineffective at organising healthcare for the citizens they have under their care. There is no way of knowing how healthcare is structured in your local region: every municipality has distributed the tasks under departments and bureaus in its own way, without providing a central point of information. This leaves both professionals and citizens in the dark about what is available and how to request it from their local government.
In my opinion, this is a situation that needs to be improved, as I believe in the following ideal:
As a citizen, I should be able to know what public services I am entitled to by law and where I can receive it.
Doing something about it
I've decided to put my software development skills to good use and to have a go at the at this problem and dedicate part of my free time on an opensource project where
- government and providers can define where services are available to citizens
- citizens can look up which services are available to them and who's providing them
If you work in government, healthcare, social services, software development or any way care about this subject: please contribute to this project and provide your valuable input.