THE Ministry of Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Alleviation is looking at making Family Assistance Program benefits open to all extremely poor individuals.
Ministry permanent secretary Govind Sami confirmed they were working on a reform agenda to streamline social welfare programs in Fiji.
"Plans to make the Family Assistance Program open to extremely poor individuals is subject to assessment of their welfare status," Mr Sami said.
"This will enable better coverage and increase coverage of the poor population. It is hoped coverage of the poor will increase.
"It's also allowing for every individual in the identified poor household up to a certain maximum number per household to be eligible for the benefit."
The reform agenda will emanate from the review of social welfare programs by the World Bank Social Protection team in 2010.
Mr Sami said the reform agenda would eliminate the vulnerability categories — such as elderly, disabled and chronically ill — as a filter of eligibility and allow poverty benefit directed at the poor.
"The new form is based on revised targeting categories, including a better definition of household living conditions and incorporates the collection of consistent information and 'trace record' which can be monitored, verified and re-certified.
"Final changes are being factored in and the new form is more transparent with clear definition and assessment processes."