Insurance coverage

End of special insurance coverage for COVID-19 patients

BANGKOK: Medical services for COVID-19 patients must be paid for by themselves or pre-existing health insurance schemes after Thailand enters a post-pandemic phase tomorrow (July 1), the government has said.

Photo: Bangkok Post.

The Deputy Secretary General of the National Health Security Office (NHSO), Attaporn Limpanyalert, said yesterday (29 June) that the Public Health Ministry’s plan to declare the country in a post-pandemic phase tomorrow would bring medical services back to the normal.

This meant that people infected with COVID-19 had to rely on their own health insurance coverage for medical services, or on pre-existing plans such as Social Security or the Universal Health Care program, the report reports. Bangkok Post.

Before transferring patients to other hospitals, patients’ condition would be assessed and COVID-19 illness would be treated like a cold, Dr Attaporn said.

“During the pandemic, many people fell ill, prompting state agencies to mobilize support from the private sector. At the time, patients with COVID-19 could seek treatment in hospitals or elsewhere.

“As the situation improves, the treatment system needs to be adjusted because COVID-19 is not as severe as before,” the NHSO deputy general secretary said.

Since the start of 2020, more than 150 billion baht has been used for the treatment of COVID-19, he added.

At an NHSO board meeting on July 4, the free distribution of Covid-19 antigen test kits (ATKs) to pharmacies would be reviewed and could be scrapped or extended.

According to Department of Disease Control criteria, ATK tests will only be done when people develop symptoms, not as a frequent precaution as in the past.