Health Minister Ahmed Emad El-Din met with six other ministers on Thursday to discuss the final outline of the medical insurance bill, which aims to provide health insurance coverage to the poorer sections of Egyptian society.
During the meeting, the ministers discussed the formation of an ad-hoc committee combining representatives of various ministries to settle on funding resources for the new insurance plan.
The bills aims to provide health insurance for citizens on a low income, making use of new medical insurance cards linked to families, rather than just individuals.
The health ministry is planning to conduct a pilot project in several cities before implementing it across Egypt. The cities have been selected based on an existing database for citizens who use smart cards.
“Between 40% and 42% of Egyptians are in need for this medical insurance coverage and the state will cover their treatment expenses through this law,” Emad El-Din previously said.
The ministry will launch a quality-control authority for hospitals to be included in the new system. Only those hospitals that have qualified doctors with good salaries, high-quality infrastructure, and high-quality equipment will be included in the insurance system, according to Emad El-Din.
However, there have been a few dissenting voices within the medical community, claiming that the government is not spending as much on the project as it claims.
Mona Mina, chief of the Doctors’ Syndicate, said on her Facebook page on Thursday that the new bill “claims it is increasing the medical insurance budget to EGP 2.7bn, but this is not accurate and conflicts with what was reported in the official newspaper.”