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MMA seeks salary hike for healthcare workers in Budget 2024

MMA president Dr Azizan Abdul Aziz hoped there would be more permanent positions, contract positions, allocations for long overdue promotions, and training for healthcare workers. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) hopes that Budget 2024, to be tabled on Oct 13, will provide an increase in wages for healthcare workers.

Its president Dr Azizan Abdul Aziz said she hoped the budget would prioritise planning and developing the healthcare workforce with the creation of more permanent positions, contract positions, allocations for long overdue promotions, and training.

She said the budget should include positions for doctors, nurses, allied healthcare personnel, medical assistants, and other support staff in public healthcare.

“Promotions and increments in remuneration are important as a motivating factor and as part of efforts to retain the services of healthcare workers in the system,” said Azizan in a statement.

She said this following a statement by Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim that the government planned to raise civil servants’ salaries in the budget.

Azizan said MMA also hoped to see more allocations for development instead of operational expenses, as the 2023 health budget only saw RM4.8 billion out of its RM36.3 billion set for development.

She said she hoped a substantial amount would be allocated to public-private initiatives to decongest the public healthcare system.

Azizan also called for an increased budget to improve healthcare infrastructure and services in rural areas and to expand telehealth services in these areas to improve access.

Addressing the Madani Medical Scheme, Azizan lauded it as a good initiative that should be expanded to include non-communicable disease management by private general practitioners (GP).

“The government should leverage the 13,000 private GPs nationwide in these efforts,” she said.