Government gives Cuepacs RM5 million health care grant

KUALA LUMPUR: The Congress of Unions of Employees in the Public and Civil Services (Cuepacs) have been given a government grant of RM5 million for the Cuepacs-Care, a health programme.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said Cuepacs was suppose to increase its health care premium but the grant may be able to reduce the premium increase.

"The Cuepacs-Care programme will indirectly help the government reduce health care cost as the 130,000 members of the insurance scheme need not go to government hospitals for treatment," he said.

Najib said those going to government clinics such as the Klinik Rakyat 1Malaysia only need to pay RM1 for treatment which includes the doctor's fees and medicine.

He said women giving birth at government hospitals only need to pay RM500 for the whole treatment while the fee at private hospitals cost about RM2,000.

"For the government to continue subsidising healthcare it had to implement the Goods and Services tax (GST) and a part of it goes to the health care system, otherwise the system would be unsustainable in the long term," the prime minister said after attending a Cupeacs welfare programme luncheon yesterday.

Najib pointed out that the government at present subsidises the health care system to the tune of RM22 billion a year and it only collects an estimated RM4 million to RM5 million via its patient charges.

Najib said the government is committed towards maintaining the health care system which has been described as one of the best in the world.