Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Public servants to get health and injury cover

Public servants to get health and injury cover

A government meeting yesterday proposed new steps for the creation of health insurance for civil servants, including those in military service.
A government meeting yesterday proposed new steps for the creation of health insurance for civil servants, including those in military service. Heng Chivoan

Public servants to get health and injury cover

The National Social Security Fund is developing a health insurance and work injuries scheme for civil servants, officials have confirmed.

The NSSF yesterday had meetings with representatives of various institutions – including the Ministries of Health and Labour – to work out a plan for the proposed scheme, according to a post on Facebook.

“This is the first time the fund is considering the creation of a health insurance plan for civil servants,” NSSF deputy director Sum Saphorn said yesterday. “Now we are preparing the new health insurance plan, and then we will submit it to the government for approval.”

If the scheme is approved, insurance that covers illnesses, prenatal care and work-related injuries would be available for about 300,000 civil servants, Saphorn said. All workers who receive salaries from the state would be eligible for coverage under the scheme.

Saphorn said workers would be expected to pay a registration fee, but the amount has yet to be determined. He said he hoped the scheme would be in place by 2017. Officials said Cambodia’s civil servants were badly in need of healthcare coverage.

“We currently have a budget to help civil servants who get sick, but we couldn’t afford 100 per cent coverage,” said Minister of Public Function Pech Bunthi. “I think this plan could make workers more productive because they will get care when they’re ill.”

Cheav Savuthea, an administrative chief of the Department of Education, said that there was no money for healthcare for workers in his department or in schools.

“When one of our staff members gets sick, we ask our colleagues for donations to buy milk and fruit and bring it to the hospital,” he said.

But some experts expressed skepticism about the quality of healthcare the insurance would provide.

“We don’t trust Cambodian clinics and hospitals, either state run or private,” said Sorn Chey, a rights worker with the Affiliated Network for Social Accountability in East Asia and the Pacific. “I think the NSSF should ensure that quality healthcare is provided by implementing a monitoring system.”

Political analyst Ou Virak, meanwhile, argued that it would be more efficient to raise civil servants’ salaries to allow them to purchase private insurance.

MOST VIEWED

  • NY sisters inspired by Khmer heritage

    Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Cambodian-American sisters Edo and Eyen Chorm have always felt a deep affinity for their Cambodian heritage and roots. When the pair launched their own EdoEyen namesake jewellery brand in June, 2020, they leaned heavily into designs inspired by ancient Khmer

  • Cambodia records first Omicron community case

    The Ministry of Health on January 9 reported 30 new Covid-19 cases, 29 of which were imported and all were confirmed to be the Omicron variant. The ministry also reported 11 recoveries and no new deaths. Earlier on January 9, the ministry also announced that it had detected the Kingdom's

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • Kampot tourism quay ‘90% done’

    Construction on Kampot International Tourism Port – a 4ha quay in Teuk Chhou district about 6km west of Kampot town – has fallen off track, reaching 90 per cent completion, according to a senior Ministry of Tourism official last week. The project is now planned to be finished

  • Demining rat ‘hero’ Magawa dead at 8

    A landmine-hunting rat that was awarded a gold medal for heroism for clearing ordnance from the Cambodian countryside has died, his charity said on January 11. Magawa, a giant African pouched rat originally from Tanzania, helped clear mines from about 225,000sqm of land – the equivalent of 42