12th August 2022 - 2 min read
Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin has revealed that 90% of six million Malaysians eligible for free health screenings under the Health Care Scheme of the B40 Group (PeKa B40) did not make use of the service. In fact, only 600,000 people have tapped into the benefits of the scheme in the last three years.
The Health Minister attributed the low uptake primarily to the mindset and misperceptions of the Malaysian public. He explained that many believe that a health check is unnecessary as they seem healthy, while others avoid or delay health screenings for fear of bad news.
In an effort to increase the take-up rate for PeKa B40, Khairy – who is also the member of Parliament of Rembau – shared that his ministry had engaged private medical practitioners for community outreach programmes in his constituency. Regrettably, the programmes had only managed to achieve 200 health screenings, falling short of their 500 targeted screenings. “That’s even with blind listings of names, addresses, and also phone numbers of people to call up,” he added.
As such, Khairy said that a key challenge to raising the take-up rate for PeKa B40 is to change the misperception of health screenings among the people. The government needs to help Malaysians understand that the objective of undergoing a health check is to ensure that they are in the best state of health, and therefore, should not be avoided.
PeKa B40 is a healthcare protection scheme that was introduced during the tabling of Budget 2019, and was upgraded under Budget 2020. Catering to the B40 income group, the scheme is provided for Bantuan Prihatin Rakyat (BPR) recipients and their registered spouses aged 40 and above. It is administered by ProtectHealth Corporation Sdn Bhd, a wholly owned subsidiary of ProtectHealth Malaysia, which is established under the Ministry of Health.
(Source: Malay Mail)
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