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Long-term Care Plan 2.0 continues to improve elderly care

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Premier Su Tseng-chang received a briefing Thursday from the Ministry of Health and Welfare on the results of the Long-term Care Plan 2.0. This plan was promoted by the government in response to the aging of Taiwan's population, the premier said, and has achieved major breakthroughs with regard to raising budgets, increasing care service locations, and upgrading services. Through measures to cut taxes, increase subsidies, expand respite care services, and shorten the transition between hospital discharge and long-term care services, the plan has helped the Taiwanese people look after their elders. In 2021, the plan's long-term care services attained an overall satisfaction rate of over 93%, and more than 97% of family caregivers felt that the services lessened their burdens.

The Long-term Care Plan 2.0 has achieved many results over its five-plus years, the premier said. First, its budget has soared from nearly NT$5 billion (US$167.3 million) to more than NT$60 billion (US$2 billion). Second, the number of care service locations has ballooned from over 700 sites to over 11,000 sites. An initiative to establish an adult day care center in every school district also increased the number of centers from 205 to 765. Third, the number of service recipients and types of services have been expanded. Average wages for service personnel have been raised to NT$38,000 (US$1,271) per month, which helped increase the long-term care workforce from 25,000 to more than 90,000. The number of service recipients also quadrupled from 100,000 to over 400,000, while the service coverage rate jumped from 20% to nearly 70%.

Looking ahead, the government will continue to review and refine long-term care policies, including strengthening training for service personnel, constructing social housing, offering space for facilities, providing idle premises and land, or using public-private partnerships to attract investments from private entities and insurance companies. These efforts will expand the number of care service locations, make services more accessible, and build a more comprehensive long-term care system.

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