Second-generation NHI slated for review within 1 year: DOH
By Ann Yu, The China PostTAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Department of Health (DOH) announced yesterday that the second-generation National Health Insurance (NHI) program will be reviewed within one year.
January 25, 2013, 12:01 am TWN
DOH Minister Chiu Wen-ta (邱文達) acknowledged that the bureau has already made some tweaks in the supplementary rate participant criteria even though the new program has only been in effect since the beginning of the year.
In a conference discussing the supplementary premium rates, officials pointed out the issue of some unemployed people who are required to pay the regular premium plus the supplementary premium if they are hired for a temporary job. Chiu said that although the government does offer subsidies to these people, the program is still considered unfair by many.
Other than this, people want medical quality and hospital finance records to be made publicly available, according to spokesman Wang Jeh-tsao.
Wang said that the DOH plans to review the second-generation program within a year, including issues related to institutionalizing health insurance, the fairness of the premium rates charged on the financially underprivileged and possible adjustments to the supplementary premium.
Premier Sean Chen commented on the recently implemented second-generation NHI premium yesterday, directing government bureaus to look into the effect of the recent adjustments.
Chen asked the Department of Health (DOH) to observe and record the effect of the premium rates and see if any problems emerge.
He added that he has instructed the DOH to place a strong focus on the unemployed or financially disadvantaged to ensure they do not feel marginalized by the program.
Chen pointed out that people are still concerned with the supplementary premium, notably that it might not be fair or that it may be a burden on financially disadvantage groups. To this, the premier said he has asked the DOH to better explain the program to the public to clear any misconceptions.
He also asked that the DOH take into account all criticism and suggestions aimed at the program, and make adjustments accordingly to ensure fair and proper functioning.