Taipei, April 17 (CNA) More than 51,000 people have not used their national health insurance cards to pay for medical treatment since the cards were first issued in 2004, according to the latest statistics from the National Health Insurance Administration (NHIA).
Pang I-ming (龐一鳴), a section chief of the administration, said that between 2004 and 2016, 51,306 people had not used their cards to seek medical treatment, around 87 percent of whom were under 65 years old, or 44,452 people.
The number of non-users aged 65-79 was 5,752, those aged 80-99 numbered 1,061 and those over 100 numbered 41.
He noted that some of the non-users stay overseas on a long-term basis, but continue to pay national health insurance so that they can keep their household registration.
Another group is the extremely disadvantaged who cannot seek medical treatment, Pang said, adding that the NHIA has handed over the statistics to the relevant agencies so that such individuals can be visited each year.
In terms of gender, the number of men greatly outnumbered women, 36,577 to 14,729.
By locality, the top three areas for non-users were New Taipei, Taipei and Kaohisung.
(By Chang Ming-hsuan and Lilian Wu)