Effective Jan 1, charges for first and second class wards at government hospitals will be raised.
However, Health Minister Dr S Subramaniam said the government had yet to decide on the percentage of the new rate.
He said only 1.6 percent of total number of patients would be affected by the increase while the rest would enjoy full subsidy.
"There are two million inpatients every year and out of which, 32,000 are treated in first and second class wards.
"Those in first and second class (wards) have been paying the charges all this while. Despite the increase, the total number of subsidy is still huge," he told a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today.
Subramaniam said the ministry was now focusing on the lower income bracket so that they would not be charged.
He was commenting on a report by a local daily that charges for patients at the wards would be increased by 50 percent.
On the latest update following investigations into a fire at the Sultanah Aminah Hospital (HSA) in Johor Baru, Subramaniam said the ministry would take stern action against the concession company which was believed to have been negligent in its maintenance of HSA.
According to him, the ministry had imposed a penalty of RM55 million on five companies from April 2015 until August this year.
"We will not impose fines but instead, the ministry will reduce the contract payment to the company which failed to adhere to the terms and conditions in the contract.
"In addition, reports to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission and the Royal Malaysian Police will be made if there are elements of fraud or crime involving the companies," he said.