Yangon: Senior cards to give elderly a break on costs

The government in its attempt to create a caring society for the elders, will  introduce a special senior card for the elderly people, a concession card that will entitle them to access cheaper healthcare or shopping discounts.

U Aung Kyaw Moe, director of the Department of Social Welfare, Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement said on Sunday that the cards will be released once the Rules for Elderly Person have been issued.

The topic will be discussed on October 10 and 20, he said.

“Once the rules come out, we will release senior cards,” he said.

With senior citizen cards, the elderly can enjoy services available in other countries, such as access to some form of health care, priority seats for traveling and shopping at designated shops.

“Especially in developed countries where sufficient budget can be allocated, such services for the elderly are available. The decision whether to issue senior cards depends on the committee’s meeting. We really want to move forward with this matter but we need to ponder whether our country is ready for it or not,” he said.

Once the Rules for Elderly Person is formulated, further discussions will take place with relevant department to provide the required resources. The Social Welfare Department already collected the number of elderly people.

The state is currently providing K10,000 per senior citizen for 39,440 elderly people above 90 years old as social pension.

The allowance is allocated once every three months for the 2017-2018 fiscal years. Arrangements are also being made to lower the age limit to increase the number of eligible recipients for the 2018-2019 fiscal years. Among Myanmar’s 53 million people, 4.9 million are over 60-years-old. One out of every 11 people is considered elderly. Therefore, improving the health sector for the increasing senior population is very important, said U Thein Swe, Union minister of labour, immigration and population, at the ceremony on October 1, International Day of Older People.




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