144. The social unrest last year, together with the persisting COVID-19 epidemic since early this year, have brought different levels of impact and influence on the mental well-being of some people. The Government has decided to provide additional resources of $300 million under the Beat Drugs Fund to better support the needy in the community and raise public awareness of mental health.
Drug Subsidies and Support for Patients with Uncommon Disorders
145. The Government and the HA introduced enhancement measures for the means test mechanism of the Samaritan Fund and the CCF Medical Assistance Programmes in early 2019 to alleviate the financial burden of patients’ families arising from drug expenses. We will further refine the mechanism after reviewing the effectiveness of the measures. At present, the Samaritan Fund and the CCF Medical Assistance Programmes cover 48 and 34 drugs respectively. We will continue to increase the number of drugs covered under the two Funds and relax the clinical criteria of existing drugs in accordance with the established mechanism, thereby strengthening the support for the needs of patients with cancers and uncommon disorders.