Health Ministry to strengthen public-private collaboration

KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry is currently strengthening its public-private collaboration with the goal of reducing the impact of medical personnel leaving government hospitals for other sectors.

Its minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad told the Dewan Rakyat today that this was part of the ministry's efforts to ensure that such a circumstance did not have an impact on the quality of services provided by government hospitals to the people of the country.

"Let me take this opportunity to state here that the ministry will strengthen our public-private collaboration initiatives.

"This is so that, in the event they leave us (government hospitals for other sectors), it will not contribute to losses for the public.

"I also have measures, such as national Electronic Medical Records (EMR) and financial reforms, which will be done by the ministry during this term for the benefit of the people," he said.

Dr Zulkefly was responding to a supplementary question from Fong Kui Lun (Bukit Bintang - Pakatan Harapan) who asked the ministry for details on the number of medical officers who left government hospitals to join the private sector.

He said that the government would continue to make efforts to retain medical personnel at government hospitals by giving better remuneration and incentives.

Based on a survey conducted in 2022, Dr Dzulkefly said 54 per cent of medical officers left government hospitals to join the private sector and statutory bodies.

The survey, he said, also showed that 28 per cent of medical officers left the government hospitals for personal reasons while six per cent joined public higher education institutions due to "slightly" better remuneration.

"Some 4.5 percent of medical officers who left government hospitals went to work abroad while 2.7 percent left the services to further their studies.

"Contrary to the general perception, only 0.8 per cent of medical officers left government hospitals to set-up their own clinics," he said.

On a separate supplementary question from Datuk Dr Alias Razak (Kuala Nerus - Perikatan Nasional), Dr Dzulkefly said the people should not make premature perception or be "very presumptive" on the impact of the review in the pension scheme for future enrollment towards critical sectors including health in the public sector.

"A comprehensive study is being conducted to look into the matter. Let us wait for the outcome of the studies before making any presumption or be 'very presumptive' that will result in a negative perception," he said.

It was previously reported that the government would implement a new civil service hiring policy, which will include a new pension scheme.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was quoted as saying that under this method, new hires in the civil service would contribute to retirement schemes like the Employee Provident Fund (EPF) and Social Security Organisation (Perkeso).

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