New medical cards may be issued to patients entitled to discounts or free treatment at public hospitals under a government plan to simplify its waiver system. Speaking after the City Forum yesterday, Deputy Secretary for Health, Welfare and Food Thomas Yiu Kei-chung said the cards would save both patients and hospital administrators time. 'The cards will expire after, say, six months. This is one of the plans we are considering and should be carried out soon,' Mr Yiu said. He warned there would be random checks on patients to ensure there was no abuse. Hospital Authority chairman Dr Leong Che-hung said the waivers would be introduced as soon as possible. Tik Chi-yuen, executive director of the Hong Kong Society for the Aged, warned more elderly people would apply for Comprehensive Social Security Assistance if the waiver only applied to those on the dole. Last Tuesday, the government announced fees would rise by an average of 26 per cent and each item of medicine would cost $10 from April. An accident and emergency fee of $100 will be introduced on November 29 and the in-patient daily charge will rise to $100 from $68. A $50 admission fee will also be imposed.