Removal of COVID-19 from Thailand’s universal health coverage list may be postponed

Thailand’s Deputy Public Health Minister Sathit Pitutecha said today (Sunday) that he will discuss with Anutin Charnvirakul, the Minister of Public Health, the possibility of postponing, from March 1st to April 1st, the removal of COVID-19 from Universal Coverage for Emergency Patients (UCEP) list.

As Omicron variant infections have surged to over 10,000 a day in the past week, he said that time must be provided to communicate any changes to the public’s right of access to medical care and that the Medical Services Department must he consulted regarding COVID-19 patients who have underlying diseases which also require medical treatment.

Despite the prospective removal of COVID-19 from UCEP list, he assured that COVID-19 patients, who are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms and are being treated at home, are still covered by the National Health Security Office (NHSO) health security program or other schemes.

If COVID-19 is deleted from the UCEP list, he said the National Institute for Emergency Medicine will discuss with private hospitals whether patients, who are regarded as emergency cases, will still have access to free medical treatment at private hospitals.


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