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Creating A Wider Safety Net

CEO Joshua Yim was prominently featured in The Business Times’ Views from the Top section on 2 September 2013, as he offered his take on the new MediShield Life national healthcare programme and how it should be funded.

He said: “While the proposed changes to MediShield Life is overall a great initiative, I feel it is important to understand how the various policies will impact two vulnerable groups in particular: those over 60 years of age who have contributed to nation-building and may not have a strong nest-egg to rely on for their retirement, as well as the low-income earners in the population. With more comprehensive coverage come higher premiums and with no opt-out option, I’m concerned about the financial crunch these groups may face. The government has promised that they will subsidise the needy so it will be essential for it to provide more subsidies to these groups. The details of how it will really work, and the criteria for qualifying for the subsidies, will need to be ironed out by the ministries. As for funding the programme, all things being equal, I believe the additional stamp duties collected due to the changes in the property rules and additional collection from the higher COE prices would be more than sufficient to fund the subsidies required due to the additional costs of the revamped healthcare programme.”

Source : The Business Times, 2 September 2013