NHI re­serve fund reaches a record high

The China Post - - LOCAL -

The Na­tional Health I nsurance’s ( NHI) re­serve fund reached a record high NT$ 200 bil­lion as of the end of July, suf­fi­cient to cover 4.5 months of in­sur­ance ex­pen­di­ture, the Min­istry of Health and Wel­fare (MOHW, ) said yesterday.

Chu Tong- kuang ( ), di­rec­tor of the min­istry’s Depart­ment of So­cial In­sur­ance, pro­vided the fig­ures when be­ing de­briefed by law­mak­ers dur­ing a pol­icy and gen­eral bud­get ses­sion held at the Leg­isla­tive Yuan.

The NHI’s fi­nan­cial state is at its strong­est since the launch of the uni­ver­sal health care scheme and the re­serve’s 4.5- month cash sup­ply has now ex­ceeded the three- month thresh­old legally re­quired.

The gov­ern­ment started to levy sup­ple­men­tary health in­sur­ance fees from cit­i­zens who have ex­tra sources of in­come three years ago. As a re­sult, an ad­di­tional NT$ 40.2 bil­lion was added to the NHI cof­fers in 2013 NT$ 46.6 bil­lion in 2014, and nearly NT$ 20 bil­lion has been col­lected as of June this year.

Ac­cord­ing to sta­tis­tics, stock div­i­dend in­come is the No. 1 con­trib­u­tor to the pool of the sup­ple­men­tary fees, fol­lowed by bonus pay­outs and rental in­come.

With the NHI’s re­serve fund ex­ceed­ing the NT$ 20 bil­lion mark, Kuom­intang ( KMT) Leg­is­la­tor Su Ching- chuan ( ) in­quired on Mon­day if the fund has been “sup­ple­mented more than it is nec­es­sary,” and sug­gested that the MOHW lower the sup­ple­men­tary charged.

In re­sponse, Chu said the sub­ject should be de­lib­er­ated with great cau­tion, as the MOHW fore­sees a re­bound in in­sur­ance ex­pen­di­ture start­ing in 2017, now that the ag­ing pop­u­la­tion phe­nom­e­non be­comes vis­i­ble in Tai­wan.

The rate- re­duc­tion pro­posal will be re­viewed this month by ac­coun­tants and other ex­perts, and a meet­ing will be con­vened in Novem­ber to fur­ther dis­cuss the is­sue, Chu added.



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