Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Hospitalisation And Surgical Scheme For Foreign Workers


 The Health Ministry plans to further expand its Entry Point Project (EPP) for Hospitalisation and Surgical Scheme for Foreign Workers (SPIKPA) programme under the Healthcare National Key Economic Areas (NKEA) into Sarawak this year.

According to the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) Annual Report 2012 issued by the Performance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu), the scheme, which calls for mandatory private health insurance for foreign workers, will cover all foreign workers, except for plantation workers in the palm oil industry.

While the SPIKPA has successfully provided coverage for 1.6 million foreign workers in Malaysia, there have been challenges in some specific job areas including domestic maids and plantation workers.

"The ministry is currently addressing these areas to further strengthen the healthcare system and safeguard foreign workers as well as to ensure that most, if not all, foreign workers in all sectors are covered under the SPIKPA," the report said.

Other critical target for Healthcare NKEA is the EPP on Malaysian Pharmaceuticals: Increasing Local Generic Manufacturing for Export, in which the focus will be to continue working with MoH to optimise local facilities, as well as review and address issues relating to pharmaceutical patent law and policy in Malaysia.

The report also stated that the Malaysian Healthcare Travel Council would be working extensively with the relevant organisations to develop outreach programmes for healthcare travel as well as continue to create awareness on Malaysia's advancing healthcare infrastructure.

The Healthcare NKEA would also commence the registration of unregistered nursing homes and cultivate the Seniors' Living (aged care) industry, besides drawing greater participation in the form of key players and strong champions to participate in the Medical Devices Industry EPPs.

Under this Healthcare NKEA, a total of 22 projects covering 10 EPPs and one Business Opportunity (BO) had been announced by the Prime Minister and they were expected to contribute RM4.6 billion to the Gross National Income (GNI), while generating investments totalling RM3.7 billion.

The NKEA is also expected to create 18,316 jobs by 2020.

The last 12 months saw a number of significant developments under this NKEA including the corporatisation of Clinical Research Malaysia (CRM), a unit under the Clinical Research Centre of the Ministry of Health.

The Medical Devices Act 2012 and the Medical Devices Authority Act 2012 were gazetted last year which will ensure that the medical devices industry is better regulated in Malaysia.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai in his message said: "It is my firm and sincere belief that we are now in a better position to respond to the expectations of our nation to develop an effective and responsive healthcare system, which is safe, effective, and equitable. We are indeed well on our way to becoming "A Nation Working Together For Better Health".

No comments: