Health Ministry submits its requests

2014 BUDGET: More hospitals needed and focus on preventive care

PUTRAJAYA: THE Health Ministry has submitted its requests and proposals for the 2014 Budget to enhance and improve healthcare services.

Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam confirmed that the proposals had been forwarded to the Finance Ministry recently.

He said the ministry was seeking more allocations to improve facilities in public hospitals.

"We need more funding to improve infrastructure in public hospitals. There is still a number of hospitals with inadequate facilities.

"With sufficient funding, we can build more hospitals to provide better services for the people," he said after launching the Malaysia Health System in Transition report here yesterday.

Present were the ministry's deputy director-general (research and technical support) Datuk Dr Maimunah Hamid, World Health Organisation (WHO) representative to Malaysia, Brunei and Singapore Dr Graham Harrison, and WHO Asia-Pacific Observatory on Health Systems and Policies director Dr Dale Huntington.

Dr Subramaniam was asked about the ministry's requests for next year's budget, which is expected to be tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak on Oct 25.

Last Friday, Najib wrote in his 1Malaysia blog calling on all Malaysians to share their opinions and ideas for the new budget.

Dr Subramaniam said for the past three years, an average of 4.4 per cent of the country's gross domestic product went towards health expenditure.

He said the ministry would also seek allocations for preventive care programmes.

"Up to 67 per cent of the ministry's budget last year was used for treatment. Less than seven per cent was used for preventive care to educate the public on maintaining a healthy lifestyle."

He said he was committed to increasing activities that focused on preventive care.

Read more: Health Ministry submits its requests - General - New Straits Times


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