The 23-year-old, together with nine recipients, received the aid from Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba here yesterday.
“I’m on six months’ unpaid leave awaiting surgery at Sibu Hospital, which is scheduled for Sept 29.
“Without this financial aid, it would be almost impossible for me to do the surgery as I just started teaching this year,” she said.
Nur Zamifirah is a Mathematics and Bahasa Melayu teacher at SK Abang Ali here.
She started to experience serious back pains two years ago.
“I have been taking three painkiller pills subscribed by doctors daily since last year,” she said.
She was told that the operation would take a day and after that she would be required to have complete rest for three to four weeks.
“The operation involves planting 30 to 40 screws into my spine to strengthen it,” she said.
Dr Adham said a total of 63,000 patients nationwide had benefited from MAF after it was introduced in 2005.
“MAF started with an allocation of RM25mil. It was increased to RM40mil from 2014 in a move to provide assistance for more poor patients,” he said.
The total number of recipients in 2017 was 5,814 people involving RM49mil, RM53mil covered 6,024 people in 2018 and 4,503 people in 2019 at RM46mil.
“For this year until Aug 31, the ministry has approved applications from 1,871 people for financial aid totalling RM23mil,” he said.
Dr Adham noted that of the number, 618 were for cardiology patients, 451 for orthopaedic patients while 242 involved ENT (ear, nose and throat) patients.
He added that the amount of financial aid for 1,311 patients for the three disciplines was RM18.8mil or 80% of the total amount given out this year.
As for Sarawak, he said RM2.74mil was approved for this year covering 171 patients, of which the highest number was 71 involving orthopaedic patients.
The Health Ministry introduced the programme to assist poor patients to either cover part or all for medical treatment, purchase of rehabilitation equipment or medicine.
“This assistance is to help the recipients improve their health conditions so that they can continue with their lives,” he said.
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