What you need to know:
- Hospitals in 27 counties were paid Sh33 million using forged introduction letters.
- The hospitals thus received millions of shillings for doing nothing.
There has never been any doubt that the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) has been the cash cow of crooked hospitals colluding with greedy insiders. As plans to phase out the NHIF and replace it with the Social Health Insurance Fund (SHIF) loom, the rot is being unmasked.
The rip-off through fictitious medical claims has robbed the taxpayer clean, paying for services that are just cooked in the fertile minds of sly operatives.
Shocking details have emerged on how some private hospitals contracted by the NHIF to provide services under the EduAfya scheme for public secondary school students fraudulently pocketed Sh82.5 million.
Hospitals in 27 counties were paid Sh33 million using forged introduction letters. In a clear example of closing the stable door after the horse has bolted, some of the health institutions have been suspended while others are being investigated by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC). Such investigations often go on for too long and crooked fellows in the end go scot-free.
Some Kenyans are incorrigible thieves. A report before a parliamentary committee reveals how between 2020 and this year, the hospitals forged introduction letters from schools and lodged claims, some for non-existent learners.
The hospitals thus received millions of shillings for doing nothing. These are the findings from the NHIF’s own investigation that also established that students treated and discharged were recorded as having been admitted and the claims inflated.
The Fas recovered some of the money, but could have prevented most of the theft with a bit more vigilance. With such blatant looting, the heftier deductions of 2.7 per cent of the gross salary in the planned health insurance changes will end up enriching these shameless operatives and cartels.
The culprits must be pursued, punished and the loot recovered, as reforms are implemented to tighten the public healthcare scheme.