HCM City Social Insurance: more specific and resolute measures needed to develop social insurance and health insurance participants after the pandemic
08/05/2022 10:38 AM
Vietnam Social Security (VSS) Director General Nguyen The Manh and a delegation from the VSS held a working session with HCM City Social Insurance on May 5 about the implementation of social insurance and health insurance policies.
VSS General Director Nguyen The Manh speaks at the meeting
Difficulties in developing social insurance and health insurance participants
At the meeting, Director of the HCM City Social Insurance Agency Phan Van Men reported on the implementation of tasks in the first four months of 2022. He said since the beginning of this year, the COVID-19 pandemic posed difficulties and the city’s Social Insurance Agency had proactively built plans and appropriate measures to fulfil the dual goals of keeping the pandemic under control and striving to fulfil set targets. The agency tried to deal with social insurance and health insurance benefits amid the pandemic. In the first four months of the year, 506,309 people in the city benefited from social insurance and over 4.6 million people underwent medical examination and treatment covered by health insurance.
However, by the end of April, there were only 2.35 million people participating in compulsory social insurance, a decline of 0.16 per cent in comparison with the same period last year. The number of people participating in voluntary social insurance fell sharply to 27,845, down 45.71 per cent in comparison with the figure of last December. The number of health insurance participants also declined, reaching 7.5 million people, down 8.13 per cent compared with the figure of last December.
Men said the reduction was chiefly due to the severe effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many workers returned to their hometowns to avoid the pandemic and for the Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday but have yet to come back to work. A number of businesses in the fields of tourism, hotels and transport still could not recover due to the pandemic.
Also, since early 2022, the city adjusted the poor and near-poor household standards so the number of people getting health insurance payment support dropped. Additionally, the city’s Social Insurance Agency failed to organise many conferences to disseminate information about insurance policies and mobilise people to participate in social insurance and health insurance. The pandemic also affected communication tasks as many staff members were infected with the virus.
Heads of agencies under the Vietnam Social Security speak at the meeting
At the meeting, the deputy director of the city’s Social Insurance Agency and heads of social insurance agencies of districts and communes also reported on difficulties and challenges in implementing social insurance and health insurance policies, including the shortage of human resources and equipment.
Detailed assessment and comprehensive solutions needed
Heads of agencies under Vietnam Social Security said tasks and targets for HCM City’s Social Insurance Agency are difficult, particularly in developing the number of social insurance and health insurance participants as the number of voluntary social insurance participants had dropped sharply.
Director of HCM City’s Social Insurance Agency Phan Van Men speaks at the meeting
The city’s Social Insurance Agency is instructed to closely follow the labour market. At present, more than 98 per cent of workers in HCM City have returned to work. The agency needed to have measures to disseminate information and mobilise them to again participate in the social insurance system.
In 2022, the Prime Minister said HCM City needed to have 91.25 per cent of its population participating in health insurance. In order to fulfil this target, the city needs to mobilise an additional 1.2 million people to join health insurance from now to year-end. This is not easy.
The city’s Social Insurance Agency needs to study and implement Decision No 546/QĐ-TTg issued by the Prime Minister on targets set for centrally-run provinces and cities in fulfilling health insurance coverage.
It is also recommended to follow the guidelines of Vietnam Social Security on the organisation of conferences to introduce and mobilise people to participate in social insurance.
Representatives from HCM City’s Social Insurance Agency and social insurance agencies of districts and communes speak at the meeting
The city’s Social Insurance Agency also needs to assess and report on the labour changes in order to have appropriate measures to develop the number of social insurance and health insurance participants; continue to effectively implement policies to support employers and employees who faced difficulties due to the COVID-19 pandemic; and increase communication.
Concluding the meeting, Director General of the Vietnam Social Security Nguyen The Manh said HCM City’s Social Insurance Agency made great efforts in 2021 and in the first four months of this year to implement directions from the sector and the city’s authorities on social insurance and health insurance, particularly in carrying out support packages from social insurance and health insurance funds for employers and employees facing difficulties due to the pandemic. It also recorded achievements in administrative reform and digital transformation.
However, he said, the city’s Social Insurance Agency needed to try harder to fulfil tough tasks and targets on developing the number of social insurance and health insurance participants and dealing with insurance benefits for participants.
A view of the meeting
In the context of changes in the labour market after the pandemic, the agency also needs to review and make a thorough assessment of data relating to labour in order to have effective measures to mobilise social insurance and health insurance participants./.
Work Injury and Occupational Disease
Medical (Health Insurance)
Certificate of coverage
VSS - ISSA Guidelines on Social Security