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The Health Protection Scheme - Essay Example

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The main objective for this paper is to discuss the arguments for its implementations, as well as those against its implementation, and compare it to other schemes in other countries. The Hong Kong Government has proposed the HPS in 2010…
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The Health Protection Scheme
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Download file to see previous pages As the essay states Hong Kong has had private health insurance for many decades in various forms. In 2009, about four million policies covered two million individuals and over 1.5 million groups. This was representative of 34% of HK’s population being privately insured. The number of people buying private insurance has gone up in the past four years. Private health insurance has contributed 12% of HK’s financing in health care between 1998 and 2009, while it has continued to grow at 9% every year with regards to total health expenditure share during the same period. In 2010, hospitals in the private sector spent a quarter of their entire expenditure on caring for inpatients, of which at least half was covered by insurance from the private sector.
According to the research findings the Food and Health Bureau, through a study on private health insurance, outlined various challenges and inadequacies that insurers, providers, and consumers were confronted with, particularly in the private health insurance sector. This led to proposals on the health protection scheme, which sought to address several issue. With regards to the insurers, it sought to address rising and non-transparent medical fees, unnecessary admissions and moral hazards because of investigations, non-disclosure and anti-selection when underwriting, and the challenge of public insurance that was dimming attractiveness for private health insurance....
Despite these statistics, the Food and Health Bureau, through a study on private health insurance, outlined various challenges and inadequacies that insurers, providers, and consumers were confronted with, particularly in the private health insurance sector (Gauld & Gould, 2012). This led to proposals on the health protection scheme, which sought to address several issue. With regards to the insurers, it sought to address rising and non-transparent medical fees, unnecessary admissions and moral hazards because of investigations, non-disclosure and anti-selection when underwriting, and the challenge of public insurance that was dimming attractiveness for private health insurance (Dembe & Boden, 2000). For consumers, it sought to address uncertainty of charges and coverage and lack of quality assurance and medical fees that were non-transparent. Finally, it sought to address coverage of procedures for outpatients and inadequate coverage for private doctors and hospitals (Shek, 2012). Argument for Health Protection Scheme One area that the HPS will help the situation is in financing, particularly with two tiers in the HK health system, i.e. public and private. The private sector mainly gets its funds from private sources like out-of-pocket payments and private insurance. In contrast, the public health insurance sector gets heavy subsidies from the Hong Kong government that come from taxes (Wong et al, 2011). While the HK government spends relatively less compared to countries from the west, the expenditure trend has been increasing. The health protection scheme has proposed to improve controls on expenditure through inclusion of voluntary participation in premiums by individuals. The government is encouraging HK citizens to join the scheme to enjoy ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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