Finland's prime minister Juha Sipila offers government's resignation over failed healthcare reforms

Alicia Farmer
March 10, 2019

"Juha Sipila has been the country's prime minister since 2015 after forming a three-party governing coalition with two other right-leaning parties".

Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila stepped down just weeks before a general election after failing to push through parliament plans to overhaul health services and social care in the face of an aging population.

Niinisto who accepted the stepping down letter urged the government to stay on a a transition governance system to facilitate the appointment of another resignation.

Sipila threw in the towel when it became clear the government would not be able to submit a proposal to parliament before the election set for April 14.

According to the government, the reform could have curbed the annual growth of Finland's public social and healthcare expenses to 0.9 percent from the current estimate of 2.4 percent between 2019 and 2029.

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Analysts said on Friday that the reform of the healthcare system, which will see it opening up to profit-seeking private operators, was too complex to be carried out in time.

Finland's outgoing Prime Minister Juha Sipila said on Friday he was "hugely disappointed" that his cabinet had to resign over its failure to pass a long-planned healthcare reform. Commentators have said that Sipila now chose to go as the key reform failed. "It has been a huge disappointment to me", Sipila said during a news conference, adding that the reform in the works "had been one of our most important projects". He said he listened to his "inner voice".

He has since 2015 headed a coalition made up of his Center Party, the conservative National Coalition, and Blue Reform, a moderate faction spun off from the far-right. "I take responsibility for the failure".

Under the plan, regional governments would take over the provision of care from local municipalities.

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