Finnish Health Care Possibilities for Clinical Trials
The Finnish health care system has proved to be cost-efficient and of high quality while it enjoys wide public support. The public health services are divided into three sectors, i.e. primary health care, specialized medical care, and hospital care. Finland is divided into 20 Hospital Districts where specialized medical care is provided by Central Hospitals (20) five of which are University Hospitals. These hospital districts are divided into 5 special remits, i.e. University Hospital Districts, where the University Hospitals are located centrally. These hospital districts and hospitals provide 95 per cent of all specialist medical care.
The remaining 5 per cent is provided by private medical services (i.e. private medical centers and hospitals). This relatively extensive private health care system is financed partly by the National Health Insurance. In addition to municipal health care, there is an occupational health service system, financed by employers and the State, which is responsible for the health care of the workforce.
Demanding clinical trials (i.e. Phase I-II) are usually organized and conducted nationally at the five University Hospitals. The hospital environment is needed to ensure patients' safety as well as standardized and controlled study procedures performed by qualified professional study personnel. Phase III-IV trials can be conducted at University Hospitals or Central Hospitals but also at Municipal Health Centers or at private health care sector.