What the new 30-baht card scheme means

There appears to be mass misperceptions regarding the universal healthcare budget or the 30-baht card scheme. Activists have argued that the government of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, which is on its way to carry out a wide expending binge populist schemes, is not acknowledging the ailing individuals who rely on the universal healthcare scheme for their medical requirements. The local media has reported how health activists across the country are standing up for the fact that the Budget Bureau has considerable diminished the universal healthcare fund by silently eliminating 680 million baht from the funding it used to receive previously. The scheme will stand advantageous nearly 70% of Thailand’s population (about 48 million individuals).

These individuals are those which are covered by neither the Social Security Fund, nor the civil servant welfare fund. In response to the complaints by activists, the government was quick to state ho the budget for the universal healthcare had, in fact, risen.

The spokesperson for the government, Narumon Pinyosinwat, stated how the activists were spreading fake news in stating these facts regarding the universal healthcare budget. She added how the Prayut Chan-o-Cha government had designated about 191 billion baht for the universal health coverage fund for economic year 2020. This marks an increase by 6.5 billion baht from the budget allotted to UHC for the current year.

But Nimit Tian-udom, a health activist, continues to believe how the updated budget has diminished under specific areas, specifically for chronic ailments.

He stated how this wouldn’t sit well patients who were bed-ridden, had kidney ailments, etc.

He said how the budget for lasting illnesses was 9.4 billion baht originally, but the Budget Bureau eliminated 300 million baht from it. The fund for bed-ridden patients was 1.1 billion baht initially, but is now 975 million baht, he added.