Health director-general Datuk Seri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah today said the base cost for dental services at government clinics are expected to increase more than 10 times, but assured that outpatients will continue to pay the same amount. Pix by Iqmal Haqim Rosman

PUTRAJAYA: Health director-general Datuk Seri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah today said the base cost for dental services at government clinics are expected to increase more than 10 times, but assured that outpatients will continue to pay the same amount.

Hisham, who confirmed a viral message circulating on the WhatsApp messaging platform, said the new charges which were in accordance with the Fees (Medical) (Amendment) Order 1982, were the actual amount if the services were not subsidised.

"The new charges will only be borne by patients who could afford (for patients who fall under first and second class category) them, however, third class patients will continue to enjoy the subsidy.

"Third class patients receive up to 98 per cent of medical and dental subsidy," he said in a statement today.

Earlier today, netizens circulated on WhatsApp, a message that appeared similar to a government circular detailing the new dental charges.

This included new charges for tooth extraction which has gone up from RM1 to RM15, scaling and polishing from RM2 to RM55 and filling from RM2 to RM25.

The circular, which was supposed to come into effect today (Feb 1), has been postponed to March 1.

Dr Noor Hisham assured that the government will not detract from its responsibility towards the poor and the low income group.

"We will continue to provide high quality healthcare at reasonable price as they (the people) had been receiving previously." he added.