MOH mulls continuing health clinic extended operating hours project, locum allowance

PUTRAJAYA,  Feb 22: The implementation of a pilot project to extend the operating hours of clinics near hospitals last year has been reviewed, and the request to continue the payment of the locum allowance is currently under consideration by the government. 

The Health Ministry (MoH), in a statement, said at present, medical officers directed to work on Saturdays and public holidays are still eligible to claim the locum allowance, while on Sundays, involving working hours from 9 am to 1 pm, they can claim replacement leave subject to the approval of the department head.

The MoH said the pilot project was implemented from March 25 to Dec 31 last year, taking into account congestion issues in hospitals.

“During this period, medical officers working on Sundays were granted special periodic approval in the pilot project to enable the locum allowance to be paid if they were directed to be on locum duty.

“In addition, pharmacists and X-ray officers in the management and professional group were also given an extension of the locum allowance at different rates,” the statement read.

After taking into account congestion issues in hospitals, including in Selangor, the government, through the Special Task Force for Agency Reform (STAR), agreed for MoH to implement the project at health clinics near hospitals.

The selected clinics are Bandar Botanik Health Clinic, Klang (near Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital), Taman Ehsan Health Clinic, Gombak (Selayang Hospital), and Ampang Health Clinic, Hulu Langat (Ampang Hospital).

For services at other health clinics, the operating hours follow office working hours, the statement added. 

“MOH will ensure that the people receive the best health services at health clinics,” it added.