Healthcare fund gradually replaces private call centers

The National Organization for Healthcare Provision (EOPYY) on Thursday inaugurated its first telephone center at the Alexandras Avenue general clinic in central Athens in a scheme aimed at gradually phasing out private operators used by the insured to book appointments with doctors.

The Health Ministry said that the five-digit hotlines run by private telephone companies for EOPPY customer services were costing consumers up to 19 million euros a year.

The Alexandras Avenue call center has 20 operators taking calls from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. It is the first of 105 call centers the ministry is planning to open by the end of 2013 and allows people insured with EOPYY to book appointments at regular local rates rather than at the inflated rates charged by private operators.

Consumers will also be able to make appointments in person with staff at the Alexandras Avenue clinic and at the other clinics where call centers will be set up.

The call centers will be staffed by a total of 259 employees from the healthcare funds that merged with EOPYY as well as an additional 150 staff that will come from other sectors of the civil service.

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