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Health insurance to include holidays

Update: August, 31/2015 - 09:48
If patients using health insurance cards have health examinations and treatment on weekends and holidays, their hospital fees will be paid through their health insurance. — Photo baotintuc.vn

HA NOI (VNS) — If patients using health insurance cards have health examinations and treatment on weekends and holidays, their hospital fees will be paid through their health insurance.

This was one of the new regulations in Circular 16 enacted by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Finance. The circular will be put into effect at the beginning of September.

Luu Thanh Huyen, deputy director of the HCM City Social Insurance, said a number of people in HCM City had requested having health examinations and treatment outside regular working hours.

They were often patients suffering from chronic diseases that needed long-term treatment, she said.

Le Hoang Quy, deputy director of the Binh Thanh District Hospital, said that the hospital received about 2,400 patients coming for health checks per day, with 90 per cent of them having health insurance cards.

To meet the needs of the patients, the hospital will lengthen the time for examinations, which were from 6am to 6pm Monday to Sunday, including holidays.

The circular was necessary, he added.

Deputy director Huyen added that the new circular was easier to enforce than past circulars.

Past circulars regulated that only very crowded hospitals and medical stations were allowed to offer health examination outside working hours. And those hospitals were required to set up detailed plans about the work and submit them to the Social Insurance.

The new circular states that every hospital can perform examinations and treatments as long as they employ the correct number of medical workers, assure proper professional conditions and adequate equipment, and must post their hospital fees in public, said Huyen.

The new circular was also welcomed by workers.

Nguyen Thai Hien works in the Linh Trung processing zone in Thu Duc District in HCM City said it was difficult for her to ask for leave for even one day to have her health checked because the company did not have enough workers to replace those seeking care.

It would be better for workers to have health examinations on weekends, she said.

However, some hospitals worried that they could not conduct health examinations outside working hours.

Le Xuan Dung, deputy director of the HCM City Tumour Hospital, said the hospital did not have enough funds to carry out the circular because it would need more funds to pay for doctors and nurses who conduct health examinations outside working hours.

Further, Tran Van Khanh, director of Hospital District 2 in HCM City, suggested that patients pay additional hospital fees if they went to hospitals on weekends, and the money would be used to pay for doctors. — VNS

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