246 patients not detained for nonpayment of bills – E/R Hospital clarifies

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The Eastern Regional Hospital is not detaining 246 patients for non-payment of fees, contrary to media reports.

The Clinical Director of the Hospital, Dr Forster Amponsah-Manu, in a press release clarified that the number is just a cumulative figure of persons recorded in 2020 between January and December and could not either pay all or part of their bills after discharge.

“We wish to state emphatically that the 246 persons are not being kept in the hospital for failure to pay their bills and we do not even have the space to contain such numbers in addition to the patients on admission.”

He explained that at a press soiree after the Hospital’s Annual Performance Review held on Wednesday, March 10, Medical Director Dr Arko Akoto-Ampaw indicated that the number of insurance card bearers patronising the hospital declined from 84 percent in 2019 to 80.6 percent in 2020, making it difficult for those who cannot afford to settle their bills completely.

“Eventually some of these clients honour their bills over time but many of them are unable to do so.”

The press release said those who were found too vulnerable to afford payment were enrolled onto the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) by the Medical Social Workers before they left the hospital.

For Dr Akoto-Ampaw, the public must patronise the NHIS as it works and is viable “and not wait until they are unwell since they may not have the needed resources to make the necessary payments”.

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana

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