But legislators say that even the $155m is likely to fall well short of long-term medical and social expenses The government has proposed increasing funding for Sars victims and their families to $155 million. An amended proposal injecting a further $20 million into the Sars Trust Fund was unveiled yesterday and the plan will go before the Finance Committee next Friday for approval. But legislators say the extra cash may still not be enough to meet their needs. The extra money will be used to increase the portion of the fund to help Sars survivors who have long-term health consequences from $50 million to $70 million. The remaining $85 million is earmarked for the 339 children, spouses and dependent parents of the 299 people who died of Sars. Families of frontline public doctors and health workers who died of Sars will not benefit from the fund because they have already received at least $3 million each. At a joint meeting of the Legco panels on health and welfare services yesterday, officials did not give an estimate of how many recovered patients could apply for assistance, but each is entitled to up to $500,000. A total of 1,456 people who recovered from Sars could potentially apply. A discussion paper prepared by the Health, Welfare and Food Bureau says financial assistance will only be offered to recovered patients suffering longer-term effects from Sars or from their medical treatment, which resulted in physical or psychological dysfunction. But legislators said all recovered patients should be eligible. Michael Mak Kwok-fung, who represents the health services sector, said: 'The government is proposing $70 million for those who recovered from Sars, but I wonder if that is enough. We have more than 1,000 recovered patients. In the longer term, especially for those with degenerative bone diseases like avascular necrosis, this would not be sufficient to cover all sorts of medical procedures, such as bone replacements.' Mr Mak suggested the government increase the funds for recovered patients - including people who were misdiagnosed - to $100 million. Legislator Lo Wing-lok, who represents the medical sector, also said patients who were misdiagnosed with Sars and given steroids should be covered. Other side effects include post-traumatic distress syndrome, difficulty in breathing and loss of muscle strength, especially among those who were put on ventilators, he added. A patients' rights group echoed the concerns. Tim Pang Hung-cheong, a spokesman for the Patients' Rights Association, said: 'We still think [the sum] is not enough to cover all the patients. 'If the government is going to help those who were misdiagnosed, the fund will be all the more inadequate.' Permanent Secretary for Health, Welfare and Food Carrie Yau Tsang Ka-lai said she would convey lawmakers' concerns to the health minister, Yeoh Eng-kiong. She said if the fund proved to be too small, the government may be able to get more funds directly from the Finance Committee. A committee to oversee the Sars Trust Fund will be set up as soon as funds are approved.