NHI reserve fund reaches a record high
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.