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Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam

GEORGE TOWN – The Ministry of Health is to propose drafting legislation to regulate Managed Care Organisations (MCO) and Third Party Administrators (TPA) under the provisions of the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998.

Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said the ministry would look into all areas and study the need for the new law to regulate the whole industry of TPA.

“If there is a need, the MoH will propose a stand-alone new law to regulate the TPA who currently manage the health benefits of employees,” he said to reporters after attending the Malaysian Medical Association dinner last night in conjunction with its 57th annual general meeting here today.

Dr Subramaniam was commenting on a new trend by MCOs and TPAs to force doctors to pay between RM2,500 and RM5,000 as a one-off payment for the appointment of a panel clinic, or RM250 annually.

He said the TPAs and MCOs did not come under the ministry’s purview and that the service offered by them was under a contract between doctors and the entities.

Subramaniam also said that Malaysia today faced new challenges that might require it to adopt a different approach to overcome them for the greater benefit of the nation.

He said a rise in the incidence of non-communicable diseases, emergence of new communicable diseases, re-emergence of vaccine-preventable communicable diseases and an ageing population were among the main issues that the country faced now.

“Our health care spending is still very low compared to that of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) nations.

“Our health expenditure is only around 4.6 per cent of the total Gross Domestic Product compared to higher GDP expenditure in other countries, whereby 52 per cent of the spending is in the public sector and 48 per cent in the private sector,” he said. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – MIC is targeting to win seven parliamentary seats, including Cameron Highlands, and 13 state seats in the 14th general election (GE14).

Its president, Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said these seats would be the party’s focus besides the other seats it would be contesting, totalling 28.

“Among the parliamentary seats, we want to win all seven seats out of nine eyed and out of 19 state seats, we are focusing on 13 seats,” he told a press conference after opening the Southeast Asia Public Health Nutrition Conference, here, today.

Dr Subramaniam was asked whether MIC had identified the “safe” seats for the party in the coming general election.

Asked on the list of seats the party was confident of winning, Dr Subramaniam, however, declined to reveal as it would be announced later.

He also reiterated the party’s stand that the Cameron Highlands parliamentary seat “belonged” to MIC and that it would be contesting the seat in GE14.

Asked on demands made by other Barisan Nasional component parties to contest the seat, he said such demands were normal before a general election.

MyPPP president, Tan Sri M. Kayveas had reportedly indicated his intention to contest this seat which is currently held by former MIC president, Datuk Seri G.Palanivel. – BERNAMA

SEREMBAN – Negeri Sembilan MIC is still in the process of identifying eligible candidates to contest in the 14th general election (GE14), said MIC president Datuk Seri S.Subramaniam.

Dr Subramaniam, who is also Health Minister, said MIC had received many requests to become candidates.

“The vetting process is being conducted in several stages, eventually we will find three people with the highest abilities to win in the GE in the state,” he told the media after the stone foundation laying ceremony of SJK (T) Lorong Java, here today.

Also present were Deputy Education Minister Datuk P. Kamalanthan and Negeri Sembilan MIC chairman Datuk L.Manickam.

Dr Subramaniam said MIC would contest in the Teluk Kemang Parliamentary constituency and the two state seats of Jeram Padang and Port Dickson.

Meanwhile he said a special fund federal allocation totalling RM4.5 million had been given to SJK (T) Lorong Java for the construction of additional blocks, which are expected to be completed in two years’ time .

“When completed, it will be equipped with 19 classrooms and other facilities such as science laboratory, library, meeting room and teachers’ room,” he added.- BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – The Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan Tamil (SJKT) Bukit Ijok, Selangor that will be relocated in Sepang will be known as SJKT Sungai Pelek once completed in 2018, said MIC president Datuk Seri Dr S.Subramaniam .

Dr Subramaniam said once relocated, the school will see an increase in the intake of students and thus would provide an opportunity for additional teachers to be employed at SJKT Sungai Pelek.

He said SJKT Sungai Pelek would be equipped with 12 classrooms, a nursery and other facilities, including a canteen, administration office, teacher’s room, guard house, field, etc.

“Once the new building is completed, students will be able to study in a comfortable and conducive environment,” said Dr Subramaniam who is also the Health Minister after handing a cheque for RM3.5 million to the SJKT Sungai Pelek board at his office, here.

Also present were Deputy Education Minister Datuk P. Kamalanathan and Socio-Economic Development of Indian Community (SEDIC) director Prof Datuk N.S. Rajendran. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – The Malaysian Health Data Warehouse (MyHDW) connects the public, private hospitals and clinics to share a variety of information and knowledge including a patient’s medical records in a secured system, says Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam.

He said the trusted source of comprehensive healthcare system which was developed by the Health Ministry and Malaysian Institute of Microelectronic Systems in 2015, would share analysis, data and research with healthcare facilities, together with the Higher Education Ministry (Universities Hospital) and Defence Ministry (Military Hospital).

Previously, he said, the collection of health data was done manually and had created a silo nature although there was technology advancement to record health data electronically.

“The use of ICT in silo was costly and complex as a patient’s medical record could not be shared if there was a need to seek treatment at another hospital.

“Now, MyHDW will focus on detailed data collection for query and analysis purposes. It boasts a portal that enables access to a wide range of health data,” he told reporters after launching the MyHDW at his ministry here today.

For example, Dr Subramaniam said, if someone wanted to know about percentage of diabetic or cancer patients in the country, they could access to the system.

“However, the system does not give access to irrelevant groups to access on specific or isolated information regarding a patient’s health data details. Such information can only be accessed by relevant people for research and analysis purposes,” he said.

The health minister said the MyHDW system, currently at phase one, had collected data from 2.5 million inpatients from all government and public hospitals, military hospitals and daycare unit services.

The phase two would continue to collect 70 million outpatient medical record data at other healthcare facilities such as health and specialist clinics.

“The summated information will include demography, clinical and procedural intervention, and presented in aggregated form which is accessible without time and location boundaries,” noted Dr Subramaniam.

He said MyHDW would leverage on Big Data and analytics to assist in making strategic business decision, improve business efficiency, drive revenue growth as well as create new and innovative business model based on evident based practices.

“If one hospital has successfully done cardiology procedures with cost efficiency, other hospitals can follow the same procedure in order to save cost and reduce wastage of unnecessary medical expenses,” he added.- BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – MIC President Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam today extended best wishes on the occasion of the Tamil New Year tomorrow.

He also said that the Action Plan for the Malaysian Indian Community, to be launched this month, would ensure a better future for the community in the national transformation agenda.

The plan focused on three major aspects, namely education, entrepreneurship and the civic development of youths.

Subramaniam said the new initiative was aimed at striking a balance in the development of the Indian community to ensure that they were included in the mainstream of national development.

“I hope the Tamil New Year tomorrow will bring greater prosperity and well-being for the Indian community and more opportunities for Malaysians as a whole throughout the year.

“Use opportunities such as these to redouble efforts to give more hope to the community,” said Subramaniam, who is the Health Minister, in his New Year message. – BERNAMA

SEREMBAN – The number of tuberculosis (TB) cases in the country rose by six per cent to 25,739 in 2016 compared to 24,220 cases in 2015.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S.Subramaniam said apart from that, total TB deaths jumped 15 per cent from 1,696 in 2015 to 1,945 fatalities last year.

“The World Health Organisation (WHO) in its End TB Strategy intends to make the world TB-free by 2035 in which the incidence of TB will be reduced by 90 per cent and its mortality rate by 95 per cent.

“For our country, various efforts will be carried out to ensure Malaysia achieve the target set by WHO,” he said in a speech to celebrate 2017 World TB Day at national level in Taman Desa Rhu here today.

The text of his speech was read by his deputy Datuk Seri Dr Hilmi Yahya. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA: Wisma Putra has received a request for a meeting from a North Korean high-level delegation, which is in the country to retrieve the body of Kim Jong-nam.

However, they are not likely to get their way as Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam has announ­ced that they would not yield to any such request unless it is made by the next of kin.

Foreign Ministry sources said the request came in “recently” but officials need some time before a meeting can be arranged.

Dr Subramaniam said the Govern­ment hoped Jong-nam’s relatives would come forward and provide DNA samples to conclude the forensic procedures.

“We want to reach a conclusion in this matter. We are not giving a deadline or time frame for the next of kin to identify and claim the body.

“If eventually no one comes forward to identify and claim it, then a decision will have to be made, and it will be made by the Government,” he told a press conference before his post-Cabinet meeting yesterday.

Dr Subramaniam also confirmed that a North Korean “high-level” de­legation was in Malaysia and has met with members of the Cabinet.

“They did not meet me. They met with other Cabinet members and had a discussion with them.

“But whatever they have asked or request­ed, as far as we are concerned, we will abide by our own protocols,” he said.

He said the Government was firm that it would not give in to any request for the body to be released to North Korea.

Dr Subramaniam said the protocols followed included identifying the body of Jong-nam and announ­cing the cause of death.

“His death was due to a nerve poison. We will not change that. Nei­ther are we releasing the body until it is identified. And we will only release it to the rightful people, which is the next of kin,” he added.

“We have not received any contact from them (next of kin), but we are not sure if the police have. The task of contacting the relatives is left to the police and the Foreign Ministry.”

Dr Subramaniam said none of those who came into contact with Jong-nam, including the two suspects and 13 medical staff who had attended to him during the incident at KLIA2, had shown signs of poisoning from the deadly VX nerve agent.

“Although one of the women did suffer from vomiting and diarrhoea, there is no other indication that anyone has been poisoned,” he said.

The North Korean delegation, which includes the country’s former ambassador to the United Nations Ri Tong-il also wants to secure the release of a citizen from police custody and develop friendly relations with Malaysia.

Only a handful of media personnel waited at the gates of Wisma Putra yesterday and they left around noon after receiving a tip-off that no such meeting would be held.

 

PUTRAJAYA: The Government will not yield to any request for Kim Jong-nam’s body to be released unless it is made by his next-of-kin, says Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam.

The Health Minister confirmed that a “high-level” North Korean delegation are in the country and met with members of the Cabinet.

However, he said the Government remained firm that it would stand firm and deny the request for the body to be released to North Korea.

“They (the delegation) did not meet me. They met with other members of the Cabinet,” he said.

Subramaniam also said that regardless of any requests made by the delegation, Malaysia would abide by its own protocols.

“For example, we have already identified and established the cause of death, which is due to a nerve poison. We will not change that.

“Neither are we releasing the body until it is identified. And we will only release the body to the rightful people, which is the next-of-kin,” said Dr Subramaniam at a press conference before his weekly ministry post-Cabinet meeting.

He said that to date, the deceased’s next-of-kin had yet to establish any official contact.

“We have not received any contact from the next-of-kin, but we are not sure if the police have. The task of contacting the relatives is left to the police and the Foreign Ministry,” he said.

Subramaniam added that they wanted to find a conclusion to the issue, but were not giving a deadline or time-frame for the next-of-kin to identify and collect the body.

“If no one comes forward to identify and claim the body, then a decision will have to be made by the Government,” he said.

On Feb 13, Kim Jong-nam was assassinated by two women who wiped a liquid on his face at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2.

Police have confirmed that the liquid used was the VX nerve agent.

 

PORT KLANG: Kim Jong-nam’s cause of death should be ascertained by next week, said Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam.

He however added that additional material was needed to concretely determine the identity of the victim killed at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 on Feb 13.

“DNA or some official previous data of the person. We need to get that confirmed,” said Dr Subramaniam after receiving volunteers returning home from the Food Flotilla For Myanmar mission.

Dr Subramaniam also said that the Health Ministry needs to work with the police to obtain the necessary data to pin the deceased’s identity down.

Jong-nam was killed by two women who splashed his face with a chemical at the KLIA2 departure hall at about 9am on Feb 13 as he was about to leave for Macau.