Selangor to introduce healthcare subsidisation scheme to help B40

SHAH ALAM: Selangor will introduce a healthcare subsidisation scheme under its Budget 2017 estimated to benefit about a million residents in the bottom 40% income group (B40).

Selangor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali (pix) said the scheme, called "Skim Peduli Sihat", applies to about 250,000 households in the state which are earning below RM3,000 a month and will cost about RM125 million annually.

"Skim Peduli Sihat will be managed by Selgate Corporation as a third-party healthcare administrator and will fund primary care treatment for each qualifying family for an amount of RM500 per year," Azmin told the state assembly today.

He said the scheme's beneficiaries will be able to receive treatment in 1,000 clinics registered in Selangor and the Klang Valley.

Those registered will receive a medical card and the scheme is also extended to the beneficiary's spouse and children below 21 years old.

Azmin said the scheme is also applicable to those who have resided in Selangor for more than 10 years and registration can be done in any state assemblyman's office, local governments and district offices, and at clinics registered under the scheme.

He told the state assembly that the reason the state government set up the scheme was because the federal government does not spend enough on healthcare.

"The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends governments to spend at least 5% of its GDP on healthcare. But in 2014 the WHO reported that Malaysia is only spending 4.2% of its GDP on healthcare," Azmin said.

Commenting on the scheme after the budget presentation, Opposition coordinator Datuk Mat Nadzari Ahmad Dahlan called the scheme a knock off of federally subsidised healthcare.

Mat Nadzari said the federal government already heavily subsidizes healthcare through government clinics, where people can consult a medical officer for as low as RM1.