Hospitals strike for higher tariffs
Private hospitals will refuse to admit NSSF patients for the week starting March 26
Private hospitals will refrain from accepting patients admitted through the social security fund (NSSF) for one week, starting March 26. They exempted, however, patients admitted for dialysis and chemotherapy.
Hospitals have been calling for higher hospitalization tariffs to match the inflation rates and wage raise decree adopted last January. The Syndicate of Hospitals said that hospitals will not be able to pay the wage increase to their employees unless new tariffs are adopted.
The syndicate called the Cabinet to list the hospitals’ demand on its agenda and to settle it before the end of March. The Minister of Public Health, Ali Hassan Khalil, submitted in February a memo to the Cabinet in which he recommended raising hospitalization fees.
The NSSF has suggested increasing hospitalization tariffs by 18 percent. This proposal was rejected by hospital owners, who proposed two alternative options. The first is to add 32 percent to all tariffs. The second option is to raise tariffs by 40 percent, with the exception of x-rays and laboratorial tests which would be kept at their current rates.
The syndicate said that it will submit a memo to the NSSF informing it that hospitals will not renew their contracts with it for the current year unless a mechanism for the regular amendment of tariffs is adopted.
The NSSF has recently transferred LL35 billion ($23 million) in arrears to 123 hospitals. The NSSF said that the total payments in 2011 reached LL420 billion ($280 million), up from LL267 billion ($178 million) in 2010.
The NSSF called on hospitals, which have signed a contract with the fund, to admit patients covered through the optional fund or lose their right to the payments.
Date Posted: Mar 14, 2012