Long-term Care In­sur­ance Bill likely to launch in 2018: Mao

The China Post - - LOCAL - BY STEPHANIE CHAO

In fur­ther ad­dress­ing the is­sue of el­derly health care, Pre­mier Mao Chi-kuo ( ) an­nounced yes­ter­day that the Ex­ec­u­tive Yuan has fin­ished its read­ing of the “Longterm Care In­sur­ance Bill” (

), which is es­ti­mated to launch in 2018, and aims to help both the dis­abled and their fam­i­lies.

Leg­is­la­tors passed the third read­ing of the Long-term Care Ser­vices Bill last month, which had sat in the Leg­isla­tive Yuan for four years. The Min­istry of Health and Wel­fare then pushed for the in­sur­ance bill in or­der to fund the care ser­vices, and af­ter two weeks of ne­go­ti­a­tions with la­bor groups, the bill­passed in­spec­tions yes­ter­day at the Ex­ec­u­tive Yuan.

Min­is­ter with­out Port­fo­lio Feng Yen ( ) re­ported dur­ing the weekly Ex­ec­u­tive Yuan meet­ing that if the Leg­isla­tive Yuan passes the bill with­out de­lay, the in­sur­ance pro­gram will launch in 2018 with a back­ing of NT$110 bil­lion, and es­ti­mates it will ser­vice ap­prox­i­mately 820,000 peo­ple.

The Long- term Care In­sur­ance Bill man­dates that all R.O.C cit­i­zens and those reg­is­tered with the cen­sus in the R.O.C. to carry a min­i­mum level of health in­sur­ance, start­ing from their time of birth, and that cit­i­zens be placed into six cat­e­gories, namely em­ploy­ees, em­ploy­ers, farm­ers, fish­er­men, sol­diers and the un­em­ployed. Mao re­ported that in­sur­ance rates are set at 1.19 per­cent dur­ing the first to third year of the in­sur­ance project. On the other hand, he also said that em­ploy­ers, in­di­vid­u­als and the gov­ern­ment must cover in­sur­ance costs at 40 per­cent, 30 per­cent and 30 per­cent, re­spec­tively.

Feng ex­plained that if an in­di­vid­ual has a NT$30,000 monthly salary, he or she will need to cover NT$108 of health costs. For those with a monthly salary of NT$50,000, they will need to cover NT$180, which is one-fifth of the Na­tional Health In­sur­ance costs.

More­over, Feng said that the dis­abled are cat­e­go­rized into four lev­els. An in­sured dis­abled per­son will get free ser­vice hours rang- ing from 15 to 93 ev­ery month. If se­verely dis­abled cases have been deemed el­i­gi­ble by the gov­ern­ment, such as dis­able­ment for an es­ti­mated or at least six months, and re­quire full-day house-based care ser­vices, they are also given NT$21,300 monthly.

Long-Term In­sur­ance Fund­ing

and El­i­gi­bil­ity

In or­der to fund the in­sur­ance project at NT$ 110 bil­lion, the gov­ern­ment must bud­get NT$40 bil­lion ev­ery year, said Feng, fur­ther ex­plain­ing that the Leg­isla­tive Yuan could con­sider com­bin­ing the Long-term Care In­sur­ance with the con­sol­i­dated hous­ing and land tax and the Health and Wel­fare Sur­charge on Tobacco Prod­ucts.

For now, peo­ple el­i­gi­ble for the cur­rent ver­sion of the long-term in­sur­ance are those for which any of the fol­low­ing con­di­tions ap­ply: rare dis­eases, dis­abled since birth (such as ac­quired brain in­juries or brain ab­nor­mal­i­ties), and those dis­abled due to work-re­lated in- ju­ries con­firmed by gov­ern­ment as­sess­ment. Ap­pli­cants can also ap­ply to trans­fer from la­bor to the long-term in­sur­ance.

CNA

Car­ers look af­ter the el­derly in this un­dated photo. The Ex­ec­u­tive Yuan passed the “Long-term Care In­sur­ance Bill” (

) yes­ter­day, and sent it to the Leg­isla­tive Yuan for fur­ther read­ing. A gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial said that in­di­vid­u­als with a monthly salary of NT$30,000 will need to cover NT$108 of health costs. Of­fi­cials stated that they hope to see the bill im­ple­mented in 2018.

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