Health ministry to maintain RM1 for HIV screening

Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye.

PETALING JAYA: The health ministry hopes to continue charging a token sum on those seeking HIV screening tests at government hospitals, after sorting out administrative matters related to a new fee structure introduced five years ago.

This followed worries expressed by a HIV activist that the Fees (Medical) (Cost of Services) Order 2014 would soon be implemented, under which three tests linked to HIV will cost between RM50 and RM150.

They are the Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome HIV Antibody (RM60), HIV antigen test (RM50) and HIV antibody confirmation test (RM150).

“The ministry wishes to continue providing the RM1 service,” Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye told FMT.

HIV activist Martin Choo said he had been informed that government facilities will begin charging RM60 for HIV screening, where only a token RM1 fee is currently charged.

Choo, who is the managing director of the Asia Pacific Council of AIDS Service Organisations, welcomed Lee’s response.

“It’s a pragmatic way forward.”