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Nepal: Immunization Law Adopted

(May 24, 2016) On January 26, 2016, Nepal’s President, Bidya Devi Bhandari, signed into law legislation on immunization. According to the Sabine Vaccine Institute, the new law is “a landmark piece of legislation that will make the country’s national immunization program more financially sustainable as new, costlier vaccines are introduced.”  (Nepal Enacts Bill to Strengthen […]

South Korea: Five-Year Mental Health Plan Aimed at Reducing Suicides Adopted

(Mar. 9, 2016) The Korean government adopted a five-year plan of comprehensive measures on mental illness, covering the years 2016-2021.  The plan promotes early detection of mental illness and obligates the government to reduce co-pays for mental health care.  The government also plans to develop a campaign to reduce prejudice against mentally ill people.  (Serving […]

Russia: Receipt of Sick Leave Benefits Will Depend on Healthy Life Style

(June 1, 2015) On May 27, 2015, it was reported that Russian legislators had discussed the possibility of providing sick leave benefits only for those Russians who maintain healthy lifestyles and participate in government-sponsored health maintenance programs. The Vice Chairman of the Health Care Committee of the State Duma (the lower house of the national […]

Aruba: Special Tax to Bolster General Sickness Fund

(Feb. 24, 2015) On December 1, 2014, Aruba began to levy a special, monthly 1% tax on most business transactions. The monies collected are to be contributed to Aruba’s General Sickness Fund (Bestemmingsheffing Algemeen Fonds Ziektekosten). (René Offermanns, Aruba: Special Levy to Contribute to General Sickness Fund Introduced, TAX NEWS SERVICE (Jan. 28, 2015), International […]

Nigeria: National Health Bill Enacted

(Dec. 16, 2014) It was reported recently that Nigeria’s President, Goodluck Jonathan, signed into law the National Health Bill, 2014. Ten years in the making, the law aims to improve the country’s healthcare system, including access to primary care for vulnerable segments of the population, such as women, children and the elderly. (Lekan Adetayo & […]

Organization of American States: Agreement with PAHO on Cooperation to Achieve Universal Health Coverage

(July 3, 2014) On June 3, 2014, the leaders of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Organization of American States (OAS) signed a joint declaration in which they agreed to collaborate in order to achieve universal health coverage in the Western Hemisphere. (Press Release, OAS, The OAS and PAHO Will Work Together for […]

Australia: Budget Includes Introduction of $7 Co-pay for Doctor Visits

(May 22, 2014) On May 13, 2014, the Australian Treasurer, Joe Hockey, published the federal government’s annual budget for the period July 1, 2014, to June 30, 2015. (BUDGET 2014-1 (last visited May 14, 2014); for information on the Australian appropriations process, see The Commonwealth’s Appropriation Framework – An Introduction, Department of Finance website, http://www.finance.gov.au/budget/budget-process/appropriation-bills.html […]

Indonesia: Universal Health Care Program Implemented

(Jan. 6, 2014) Indonesia's government has said it is implementing a universal health care program, beginning on January 1, 2014. (Nadya Natahadibrata, Indonesia’s government has said it is implementing a universal health care program, beginning on January 1, 2014. (Nadya Natahadibrata, Govt Set to Launch “Milestone” Program, THE JAKARTA POST (Dec. 31, 2013).) The program […]