1,800 medical services to go up

Under a roadmap set by the Ministry of Health, 1,800 medical services will go up, said the ministry in press release on October 9.

Crowded patients waiting to see doctors in hospital No.115 (Photo: SGGP)

Head of the ministry’s Department of Planning and Finance Nguyen Nam Lien said that new medical fees issued by inter-ministries would include equipment and materials, doctor wages, various allowances for health workers behind 1,800 medical services at public hospitals.

The new pricing scheme will divide into two phases. It is planned that the first phase of the roadmap will take effect on December, the new pricing will include direct fee (medical equipment and surgery allowances).

Doctors' wages will be counted in the new pricing of medical services in the second phase from the first of March, 2016

Additionally, new pricing of 1,800 medical services is just for insurance card holders while patients without insurance card will pay the present fee level. Next year the Ministry will apply the new pricing for those without insurance cards.

Mr. Lien frankly admitted that medical fee adjustment will greatly affect essential services and on each households at different level. For group of insurance card holders ( around 23.7 million including poor people and those are social welfare beneficiaries) will benefit as their medical fee will be paid by insurance company.

For families whose economic condition is close to poverty line and their health cost is supported 70 percent by the government just pay 5 percent of total medical fee while they had to pay 20 percent before the new pricing take effect; accordingly, the new pricing will not greatly affect them.

Those must pay 20 percent of total medical fee will slightly be affected.

On the other side, from January 1, 2015, those buy insurance cards in 5 successive years when they go to hospital of their first choice for treatment, they just pay a sum equivalent to 6 basic month salary if their medical cost is higher than 6 basic month salary.

It is planned that hospital bed charges will increase by VND10,000-20,000 (US$0.45-0.9) per day and the cost of a surgery will rise by VND300,000-1.5 million ($13.5-67.6). Examination cost in the first-leveled hospitals will be VND40,000; in the second-leveled hospitals will be VND39,000; the third and the fourth will be VND34,000 and VND31,000.

At present, examination charges in these hospitals are VND20,000; VND15,000; VND10,000 and VND7,000 respectively.

By Nguyen Quoc - Translated by Uyen Phuong

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