A National Health Board (NHB) will synchronise the roles of various ministries and the private sector in managing macro-health policies, Public Health Minister Cholnan Srikaew said.
The board, to be chaired by the prime minister, will be a central body where the government and private sector work together to drive health policies, Dr Cholnan said.
Under the NHB, the execution of health policies will not be limited to the Public Health Ministry.
"Agencies putting health policies into practice are working out of sync, which hurts the quality of healthcare being delivered," the minister said.
Dr Cholnan said the board would not duplicate the work of other agencies, such as the National Health Security Office (NHSO) and the National Health Commission.
He added the NHB budget will not affect funds granted to other agencies since its authority is restricted to policy implementation and oversight.
"Having said that, the NHB will not diminish the role of the Public Health Ministry," Dr Cholnan said. "In fact, the board will strengthen it as public health policies stand to benefit from being carried out in an integrated and comprehensive manner. It helps by plugging loopholes."
The minister said the government has no plan to collect 30 baht from members of the "gold card" universal healthcare scheme each time they seek medical treatment.
However, he said the government will continue to improve the scheme while also narrowing the gaps between universal health insurance programmes -- the gold card scheme, the Social Security Fund and state officials' health insurance policy.
Meanwhile, Dr Prasit Watanapa, an adviser to Mahidol University's Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, urged the government to inject more funds into the system, saying the country is not spending enough on the healthcare sector when the nation's Gross Domestic Product is considered.
"We need to make sure that we have sufficient funds to cover people's expenses," he said.
He agreed that the 30-baht universal health insurance scheme should be upgraded. However, he suggested the government streamline reimbursements of medical bills for civil servants and rein in problems such as the use of fake IDs to obtain medical services.