Workers make monthly pay check contributions but receive less healthcare coverage than free universal care.
Public health services in line for a shake-up by PENCHAN CHAROENSUTHIPAN & APIRADEE TREERUTKUARKUL
....Since its formation in 1991 the SSO (Social Security Office) has collected contributions from voluntarily insured persons for seven types of benefits - illness, maternity, severe disability, death, child allowance, old-age pension and unemployment.
The proposal [to transfer management of the SSF medical care services to the NHSO (National Health Security Office) in charge of the so-called 30 baht universal 30 baht healthcare program] arose after complaints that SSF members were paying for limited health coverage compared to those under the universal health care scheme who pay only 30 baht per visit to a hospital...
...Saree Ongsomwang, a consumer rights activist, suggests the SSO focus on other benefits especially the old age pension for SSF members
She said the current contributions for medical and health benefits should be diverted to the old age pension instead.
When the SSO starts paying old age pension benefits to retired SSF workers in 2014, it is estimated that they will receive just 2,000 baht a month.
This is too small an amount for anyone to live on. The members should receive a larger amount," she said.
Ms Saree would not comment on the proposal to transfer the health services. But she said SSF members were the only ones paying for their health services...
...Health care was the NHSO's sole focus and so it would be easier for the agency to concentrate on developing the quality of services. It could also be more effective in controlling costs based on the annual budget per head, he said
For example, the agency was outlaying 800 to 900 baht a year on healthcare costs for workers while the SSF was contributing 2,000 baht a year.
However, people of working age were mostly healthy and the expenses incurred by this group was usually low compared to the elderly, who on average cost three times more...
...Pongsadhorn Pokpermdee, an independent health economist who compared the two schemes, said hospitals listed under the SSO network were spending an average of only 700 baht a member and keeping the rest of the 2,105 baht budget a head for themselves.
Fund patients do not even have access to the same medication that NHSO members have as the private hospitals seek to cut their costs.
Mr Pongsadhorn said many SSO hospitals would not refer serious cases to other hospitals that could provide better treatment because they did not want to share the fund contribution...
(Source: Bangkok Post, Public health services in line for a shake-up, 15/02/2011, PENCHAN CHAROENSUTHIPAN, APIRADEE TREERUTKUARKUL, link)
public health - the science of preventing disease in large groups of people that live together (community) and the practice of community hygiene (making things clean) that includes preventive medicine, health education, sanitation and environmental safety (See Wikipedia)
shake-up - to make changes in the way a company or organization works, to make it better achieve its goals
X in line for Y - action X should be done to Y
social security - money paid by government to people who are sick, unemployed or who have some other problem
Social Security Office (SSO) - the Thai government agency in charge of social security in Thailand
contributions - the amount given by each member to the shared fund
voluntarily - done because you choose to do it rather than because you have to ด้วยความสมัครใจ
maternity - dealing or related to being a mother
maternity leave - the period of time that a woman giving birth to a child does not have to work
benefits - money, services, or goods you receive from a government or company programme เงินช่วยเหลือ
severe - very serious and worrying ที่รุนแรง ที่น่าเป็นห่วง
disability - an illness, injury or condition that makes it difficult for someone to do the things that other people do ความพิการ
allowance - an regular amount of money that someone receives in order to pay for the things that they need เงินสนับสนุน, เบี้ยเลี้ยง
pension - a regular payment by a company or the government to people after their retirement เงินบำเหน็ด บำนาญ (See Wikipedia)
unemployment - the condition of not having having a job, being without work, losing a job การตกงาน (See Wikipedia)
proposal - a plan or suggestion for a group to consider ข้อเสนอ
transfer - to move someone or something from one place, vehicle, person or group to another ย้าย
fund (noun) - a collection of money for some project or other use เงินทุน กองทุน
fund (verb) - to provide money for something ให้เงินทุน
SSF - Social Security Fund, money collected from workers to be used for various "social security" purposes
NHSO (National Health Security Office) - the government agency in charge of the universal "30 baht" healthcare program
complaints - when people say there is something wrong and they want it changed
coverage - the bad things that might happen to you (injury, disease, fire, accident, tsumani, disaster) that your insurance policy will pay for
universal - involving everyone ทั่วไป
scheme - a plan that is developed by a government or large organisation in order to provide a particular service for people แผนการ โครงการ
consumer - someone who buys and uses goods and services ผู้บริโภค
rights - what the law allows you to have and do, something you are legally or morally allowed to do or have สิทธิ์ (See Wikipedia)
activist - someone who takes part in activities that are intended to achieve political or social change, especially someone who is a member of an organisation นักกิจกรรม, ผู้ดำเนินการที่มีความกระตือรือร้น
current - of the present time ปัจจุบัน
divert - cause something to change direction เบนเส้นทางเดินน้ำ
retired - no longer working because you have reached the age where you are officially too old to work เกษียณอายุ
comment - to express an opinion แสดงความคิดเห็น
focus - the main thing it is concerned with ให้ความสำคัญ
sole focus - the one thing it is concerned with
concentrate - to give most of your attention to one aim or activity เพ่งความสนใจไปยัง มุ่งไปที่
effective - producing the result that was intended ได้ผลดี
annual - happening once a year ประจำปี
budget - the amounts of money that an organisation has available to spend on different things during a period งบประมาณ (See Wikipedia)
per head - per person, the amount of money to be spent for each person
outlaying - giving money for some project or activity
healthcare - the treatment and prevention of diseases and other medical problems
elderly - (of people) old สูงวัย, อาวุโส, อายุมาก older people, over 65
independent - separate, not connected, working by yourself with your own resources พึ่งตนเอง เป็นอิสระ
schemes - systems for achieving some goal
network - a large system of connected parts, organisations, people, etc. เครือข่าย
access - the ability to get something สิทธิหรือโอกาสในการใช้
medication - a medicine, or a set of medicines or drugs used to improve a particular condition or illness
provide - to give someone something that they want or need
treatment - the process of providing medical care การรักษา
share - to do or use something at the same time as someone else ใช้ร่วมกัน
fund contribution - the regular payment to a fund that a person makes (every month, for example)
contribution - a regular payment that you make into some fund การลงทุนหรือช่วยเหลือ
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