KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 7 — The RM31.9 billion allocation for the Ministry of Health under Budget 2021 is higher than the RM30.6 billion allocated for 2020, says Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz.

Responding to allegations that the government had drastically reduced the allocation for public health next year, he said under the 2021 Federal Projected Income and Expenditure, the allocation for medical supplies and consumables amounting to RM4.29 billion had been classified under item 080000 (Specific Programmes).

He said this included RM2.89 billion for Government Supply of Public Medical Facilities and RM1.4 billion for medicinal and laboratory supplies.

“This is why the total allocation under code 020000 (Medical) shows a ‘reduction’ from RM14.2 billion (2020) to RM11.3 billion (2021).

“These details contain provisions for various areas of health expertise including nephrology and pharmacy. The fact is, no area of expertise has experienced a reduction in allocations,” he said in a statement on his official Facebook today.

Zafrul said when tabling the Budget yesterday, he had also announced the government’s additional allocation of RM475 million for the supply of reagents and consumables needed in relation to COVID-19, as well as more than RM500 million for other purposes including the provision of personal protective equipment and hand sanitisers for frontline staff and for the National Disaster Management Agency to coordinate efforts to combat COVID-19.

He said the additional allocations were not included in the operating expenditure allocation contained in the Federal Projected Income and Expenditure as it was allocated separately under the COVID-19 Fund, and that all the allocations were over and above the Government’s RM1.8 billion allocation this year for the implementation of the MCO and public health needs related to COVID-19.

“I would like to reiterate that the Government will not compromise in its efforts to safeguard the lives and health of Malaysians,” he added.


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