Cabinet puts brakes on Covid care downgrade

THE PUBLIC Health Ministry was ordered by the Cabinet at its meeting today (Feb. 22) to postpone removing Covid-19 from the list of ailments covered by the Universal Coverage for Emergency Patients (UCEP) scheme set to take place on March 1, Matichon newspaper said.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul had earlier said he had already signed a ministerial announcement adjusting medical care for Covid patients who are not in critical condition to come under the hospital they are assigned to according to their medical benefit scheme for free treatment.

However the Cabinet decided to postpone the downgrade because there is a tendency for the number of Covid patients to increase which makes it necessary to keep Covid under UCEP scheme that allows them to get free treatment everywhere.

Anutin confirmed to the Cabinet that there are still sufficient beds, medical equipment and supplies to treat Covid patients, said. 

He added that hospitals have not reduced their public care service with none refusing to accept patients. Moreover and hospitels still remain open.


Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha in the background. Photo: Matichon

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