TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Deputy Finance Minister Mardiasmo revealed that the deficit incurred by the Health Care and Social Security Agency (BPJS Kesehatan) stemmed from 50 percent of independent participants (non-wage workers/PBPU) that did not make regular premium payments.
"So far, only 50 percent [of them] have paid (the premiums). Registrants (make the payments) when they get sick and after receiving health services they stop and no longer pay the premiums," said Mardiasmo during a discussion on the premium rate of the insurance at the Ministry of Communication and Information office, Monday, Oct. 7.
Mardiasmo noted that the number of independent participants amounted to 32 million, or 14 percent of the total participants, which reached 223 million people to date.
BPJS Kesehatan is predicted to face a deficit of Rp32.84 trillion by the year’s end. The figure includes the default of Rp9.1 trillion that could not be filled by the agency in 2018.
Therefore, Mardiasmo suggested that the government must immediately execute three plans to overcome the deficit. First, the management system must be improved. He also highlighted the importance of synergy between JKN organizers, namely BPJS Kesehatan and BPJS Employment. Thus, the two can work on cost sharing or joint expenses.
The second plan is beefing up the role of local administrations in the system, and the last is adjusting the premiums, both for independent participants and participants in the category of Contribution Assistance Recipients (PBI).
The government previously mulled to increase the premiums of BPJS Kesehatan by 100 percent to curb the deficit. Mardiasmo said that the premium hike would take effect for independent participants of class I and II as of January 1, 2020.
FRANCISCA CHRISTY ROSANA