In order to establish a system to help low-income elderly and disabled people in need, the Ministry of Health and Welfare has promoted the National Ten-year Long-term Care Plan 2.0 since 2015. Besides extending the target groups and services, the launch of benefit and payment systems encourages people to provide long-term care (LTC) services, enhance service functions and assist more people in need. The MOHW care management system found a 70.9% increase over the previous year in first-time applicants for LTC services from January to November 2018, rising from 71,777 to 180,660.
Long-Term Care Plan 2.0 has four major features, beginning with providing resources. To promote a comprehensive community-based care service, the government established: the ABC scheme; 472A (Integrated Community Service Center); 2,922B (Long-term Care Service Institution); and 1,603C (Grocery Store of Care Service). Though just established at the end of November 2018, the number is expected to reach 3,827 in 2019, which will be ahead of the Long-Term Care Plan 2.0 schedule.
The construction of health, welfare and long-term care facilities under the Forward-Looking Infrastructure Project has been approved for 568 cases representing nearly NT$ 2.47 billion, with an approval rate of 92.3%.
The MOHW promotes dementia care services and set up a Support Center for People with Dementia and their Families in 2017. We also announced the items of Taiwan Dementia Plan 2.0 in June 2018, with 350 such support centers and 73 Integrated Dementia Care Centers established by the end of November 2018. Some 184 hospitals participate in the intensive plan for LTC discharge-friendly hospitals. To streamline discharge planning services and connect health care with LTC services, a pilot plan for diversified rehabilitation services was launched in August 2018. This helps people with activities of daily living, reducing the cost of care and family caregiver burdens to promote localized healthy aging. Family Caregivers Support Innovation Plans have been initiated by 11 cities and are expected to be promoted in all 22 cities in 2019.
Long-Term Care Plan 2.0 also is notable for significantly improving home-caregiving staff's working conditions by raising salaries and encouraging job retention. According to a nationwide survey on the monthly salary of home care workers in August 2018, 44.29% receive NT$ 35,000+; another 35.63% are paid between NT$ 32,000 to 35,000.
The MOHW has launched a pilot plan in collaboration with the Ministry of Labor to expand respite care services for families with foreign caregivers. Since December 1, 2018, families employing foreign home-caregivers to take care of individuals who meet the disability levels of 7-8 as assessed by LTC Management Centers and are living alone (only live with their foreign caregivers) or those whose primary caregiver is over 70 years old can apply for respite care services and related benefits if the foreign caregiver is temporarily unable to provide care services. This pilot plan is expected to benefit 8,610 families in 2019.
A new hotline (1966) has offered assistance to those seeking to access LTC services since November 24, 2017. By the end of November 2018, the total number of incoming calls was 125,464, averaging 338 calls daily. This hotline is expected to build a Customer Relationship Management system in 2019 to upgrade traffic progression and manage customer data in order to better share information about public resources.