From municipal health care to student health care

From 1 January 2021, FSHS, the Finnish Student Health Service, will also include all students at Arcada UAS. Student health services, which were previously limited to University students, are expanded through the establishment of the Student Health Care Act for students at Universities of Applied Sciences (695/2019).

The Health Service is a non-profit organization, the services are funded by state funds and student health care fees. When the reform takes effect, Kela, the Social Insurance Institution of Finland, will finance the majority of student health services – 77 percent – and the remaining – 23 percent – comes from the student’s own pockets. The Student Unions of Universities have been tasked with collecting the health care fee from the students and constituted 57 € of the Student Union membership fee for the academic year 2019-2020, but from 2021 this task will be transferred to Kela. The change will thus affect the Student Unions of Universities membership fee, since the health care fee will no longer be included in the membership.

For the student at Universities of Applied Sciences, or more specifically for you as a member of the Arcada Student Union – ASK the change will not be noticeable. Of course, the reform will mean that all students at Universities of Applied Sciences will also have to take part in the financing of the Student Health Service, which means payment of the mandatory health care fee. However, the Student Union membership will not change as a result of the reform. The health care fee for 2021 is not yet decided, but it is most likely to rise from previous years due to the expansion of the range of services.

At a nationwide level, the reform will increase the number of student health users from approximately 125,000 university students to approximately 270,000 University and UAS students. The expansion of the services also means an increase in local services from 18 locations to 52 locations and from 12 service points to 21 and the number of employees will increase from around 550 people to about 1000.