Medifund, Medifund Silver distributed $25m more in last financial year, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

Medifund, Medifund Silver distributed $25m more in last financial year

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Medifund and Medifund Silver disbursed $156.5 million in the last financial year, $6.7 million more than in the previous year.

Almost all applications or 99.9 per cent were approved, the annual report released yesterday showed.

The funds are a safety net provided by the government for people who are not able to afford the cost of their treatments even after subsidies, whether in a hospital, nursing home or polyclinic.

Medifund was set up in 1993, followed by Medifund Silver in 2007 and Medifund Junior in 2013 for children from needy families.

The funds had given institutions $182.7 million, or $25 million more than the previous year, but only 86 per cent was given out to patients.

The two funds together grew by $3 million to $4.65 billion, including the $4.5 billion capital grant from the government.

Among hospitals, Singapore General Hospital (SGH) received the lion's share or $29.3 million, followed by Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) with $24.5 million.

Among step-down care facilities, Ren Ci Community Hospital received $6.75 million while the SingHealth Community Hospitals got $3.5 million.

Polyclinics were given $6.57 million to help patients. The Agency for Integrated Care, which subsidises poor patients in need of mobility aids, day care and home care services among other things, was given slightly more than $4 million on behalf of the fund.

The report said: "Over the years, MediFund has been enhanced to ensure that needy Singapore citizens receive appropriate and adequate help."

For example, its use was extended to patients using polyclinics, dental, antenatal and delivery services in 2013.