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20.05.2019 General News

Suhum Gov't Hospital Turns Away NHIS Cardholders Over Debts

some NHIS Cardholders patients at Suhum hospital
some NHIS Cardholders patients at Suhum hospital

Information reaching Modernghana indicated that, the Suhum Government Hospital in the Eastern Region, has suspended its services to the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) due to non- payment of Health Insurance claims.

According to sources closed to patients who sought health services from the health facility, management and staff have announced that, from Monday May 19, the Hospital will stop receiving patients with the NHIS Cards.

The amounts of debt owed the Hospital by the Health Authority is not known, but our sources said an announcement on notice board read that the hospital has cancelled and will no longer accept NHIS cards due to failure on the part of the Authority to settle them months now.

Over 600 patients who visited the health facility on Monday May 19, were allegedly turned away, due to the huge debts that the Hospital incurred for services renders to the patients under the scheme.

Our sources say many of the residents are unhappy over the turn of events as most of them complained they do not have money to access services elsewhere.

The long delay in repayments of claims is seriously affecting cash flow and the operations of most hospitals that provide services to the NHIS cardholders have also had serious issues with the government.

Many of the services providers are of the view that the continuous retention of 10 % of claims submitted when payments are made continue to affect the ability of the hospital to recover the cost of procuring supplies.

The NHIS was introduced in 2005 as a pro-poor health policy to replace the notorious cash-and-carry which many Ghanaians said, was unfriendly to the ordinary Ghanaian.

The policy created room for children and the aged, except renewal to register onto the scheme, while adults and SSNIT contributors pay for both registration and renewal.

Over the last few years, government inability to pay claims by the services providers affects the rational and quality of the policy, thereby making the services providers gradually turning away persons who access their services using the NHIS card.

Recently, it was reported in the media that the Cape Coast Teaching Hospital has suspended its services to health insurance scheme cardholders due debts owed by government.

According to the reports, the NHIA owes the Teaching Hospital of over GHS100,000.00 to 150,000.00