In January 1999, the Polish government implemented a new law reorganizing the health care in the country. This paper includes an outline of the changes, the main impact of which consisted of introduction of universal health insurance administered by Health Insurance Funds (‘‘Kasy Chorych’’). In June 2001 and 2002, a survey of insurance administrators and health care workers provided data concerning the reception of the new system, the perceived inadequacies, and the postulated changes. The intended objective of privatization of health provisions appears as remote as it was before the changes. The major obstacles are identified as political hurdles, physician resistance, and continued dependence on state allocations.

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