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Italy: Vaccinations for Children Made Mandatory

(June 13, 2017) On May 19, 2017, the Italian Parliament approved the Decree-Law Containing Urgent Measures on the Compulsory Vaccination of Children, which makes vaccinations mandatory for children as a condition of school registration. (Italy Makes Childhood Vaccinations Compulsory, FRANCE24 (May 19, 2007); Decree-Law No. 73 of June 7, 2017, Urgent Provisions on Vaccine Prevention, GAZZETTA UFFICIALE (June 7, 2017), […]

Taiwan: Amendment of Long-Term Care Act

(Mar. 23, 2017) Taiwan’s Long-Term Care Services Act, which was promulgated on June 3, 2015, but is not slated to become law until June 2017, was amended effective January 28, 2017. (Long-Term Care Services Law: Amendment of Long-term Care Services Law Revises Articles 15, 22, 62 and 66, THE GAZETTE OF THE OFFICE OF THE […]

Argentina: Universal Health Coverage Plan

(Sept. 2, 2016) On August 2, 2016, Argentina’s Ministry of Health issued Decree No. 908, which creates a Plan for Universal Health Care (PUHC) aimed at improving the quality of primary health care services, developing and modernizing the Integrated Networks of Health Care Services by providing advanced equipment to the public health care system, and promoting and protecting preventive […]

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 […]