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Health minister communicates with public to calm down fiscal concerns
  • By Kwak Sung-sun
  • Published 2017.09.20 15:23
  • Updated 2017.09.20 15:23
  • comments 0

Amid mounting concerns among political and medical communities about how to raise financial resources for the “Mooncare,” the government is seeking a solution from direct communication with the public.

Minister of Health and Welfare Park Neung-hoo박능후 invited 15 civilian reporters Tuesday and anchored a live broadcasting on Facebook to explained the healthcare policy of the Moon Jae-in administration.

Minister of Health and Welfare Park Neung-hoo explains about the government’s healthcare policy on a Facebook live broadcasting Tuesday.

Park conducted the broadcasting as a Q&A session with the reporters and the participants on the Internet.

Minister Park answered various questions about the government’s healthcare policies such as the Mooncare and the state care of dementia patients.

One of the participants, for example, said, “I have to ask about fiscal problems related to the Mooncare. What are mid- and long-term plans?”

Minister Moon said, “The government has set up plans to maintain the health of health insurance not just for five years but decades. To spend 11 trillion won ($9.8 billion) out of the total accumulated find of 21 trillion won over five years is little more than spending two months of payment costs.”

Besides, the ministry will reduce various wastes and make the most of the annual 3 percent rise in insurance premiums and increasing government subsidies, and therefore there will be no problems, Minister Park said.

“The Pharmaceutical Benefits Committee of Health Insurance Review and Assessment recently decided to raise the premium rate by 2.04 percent next year, instead of 3 percent, causing concerns about fiscal health, but the decision was within the affordable level,” Park said.

Park also explained about the state responsibility system for dementia.

“The government wants to share the burdens of patients who have dementia and their families,” he said. “We will set up 252 dementia centers nationwide and provide comprehensive services such as early diagnosis, treatment, and care services.”

He also emphasized the need to increase support for the treatment costs of children and expand rehabilitation hospitals for children.

Another participant said, “My child was born premature, used incubator and received treatment support from the government. But the government doesn’t help babies over 2.5㎏ in weight even though they use incubators.”

Minister Park said, “From next month, we will lower patients’ shares of hospitalization fees for children to 5 percent regardless of income. We will also try to reduce further the burden of individuals who find even the 5 percent share burdensome.”

“So far the government has not paid much attention to the rehabilitation hospitals for children, leaving it to the private sector,” Park said. “We realized the deficiency belatedly, and plan to establish such hospitals in each region.”

Park said in conclusion, “We will try to move closer to medical fields and do our best to implement our policy in a better direction than ever before.”

kss@docdocdoc.co.kr

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