Authorities of the Apam Catholic Hospital have expressed concern about the rate at which patients have been absconding without settling medical bills.
They have consequently appealed to the people in the area to register with the National Health Insurance scheme to save the situation.
The Medical Superintendent of the Hospital, Dr. Ebenezer Ameka, who disclosed this to Ghana News Agency in an interview at Apam on Thursday said between September 2006 and April 2007 patients have run away with bills totaling about 31.1 million cedis.
According to him between September and December 2006 the hospital incurred a debt of 17,670,000 cedis in respect of patients absconding without paying their bills.
He said another 13,502,000 cedis being cost of medical bills were also lost to the hospital in the same situation between January and April 2007.
According to him all the affected patients had not registered with the National Health Insurance Scheme.
The Medical Superintendent said absconding of patients with bills has been identified as one of the major problems facing the hospital in recent times.
Dr. Ameka said the hospital, being the only big hospital in the Gomoa district, serving about 220,000 people needs enough money to provide facilities and equipment and therefore appealed to the people to desist from such habit since it undermined the growth of the hospital.
The Principal Midwife Superintendent of the maternity ward, Sister Cecilia Odoom, said two patients who gave written undertakings to settle their bills later also managed to escape.