The Ministry of Health and Welfare announced it would extend health insurance coverage for magnetic resonance imaging for areas such as the face, sinus and neck, during the first half of this year.
The extended insurance coverage comes as a follow-up measure of the ministry’s plans to strengthen the health insurance protection announced in August 2017. The health-welfare ministry began to apply insurance for brain and cerebrovascular MRI examination in October last year.
Although MRI scans are cost-effective, insurance had covered only patients suffering from four major illnesses -- cancer, heart, cerebrovascular disease and rare diseases.
If a doctor judges that a disease is present in the head, neck or sinus, however, anyone will be able to benefit from the health insurance, which will reduce the financial burden for patients receiving MRI.
The ministry said it would consult with medical professionals on obtaining the specific insurance coverage range and the amount of medical fee relief while amending the relevant laws. It also plans to expand health insurance to all MRI examinations by 2021.
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