Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Health insurance is compulsory as regulated in Vietnamese law as well as being the interests and responsibility of everyone, said Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc when chairing a national teleconference on stepping up the implementation of health insurance for all people on June 3.

He spoke highly of the strong determination of ministries, sectors and localities to raise the health insurance coverage rate to 90 percent of the total population by 2020 from 76.5 percent in 2015.

However, he noted that several localities still have proportions of under 75 percent. The application of information technology in health check-ups and treatment and in administrative procedures remains slow, while prices of medical services are sometimes counted incorrectly, thus affecting the quality of services.

To achieve the target, the Government leader asked Vietnam Social Insurance (VSI) to propose measures and policies on expanding the coverage, to the Government, the Prime Minister and relevant ministries.

The VSI was requested to coordinate with medical clinics nationwide to facilitate health check-ups and treatment, as well as insurance payments.

He assigned the Health Ministry to steer hospitals and medical clinics to improve the quality of health check-ups and treatment, and avoid discriminating against health insurance card holders.

The health sector was required to step up administrative procedure reform, and better the payment process of hospital fees.

The PM also asked People’s Committees of provinces and centrally-run cities to include the rate of health insurance participants in their annual and five-year socio-economic development goals, and take the responsibility for fulfilling the target before the Government.

He urged the Finance Ministry to renew the State budget spending on health to support health insurance subscribers.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Education and Training was requested to ensure 100 percent of students join health insurance by 2017, and the Ministries of Defence and Public Security were asked to help all armed officers and soldiers join this kind of insurance by 2018.

“A civilised society and a developed country need a good health insurance system,” the leader affirmed.

Speaking at the teleconference, Health Minister Nguyen Thi Kim Tien said that to increase the rate and the attractiveness of health insurance, the ministry has carried a lot of measures, including improving the quality of medical check-ups and treatment, reducing hospital overloads, and punishing more than 7,000 health workers that showed bad behaviours toward patients.-VNA