A special Audit exercise carried out by the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) in the Ashanti Region has uncovered over GH¢792,309 massive fraud and other financial irregularities in the operations of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the NHIA, Mr. Sylvester Mensah, announced this at a press conference in Accra, yesterday.
According to him, out of the over GH¢792,309, the Asokwa Sub-Metro Assembly embezzled an amount to GH¢569,104.02 while the Sekyere East Assembly misapplied GH¢800,000 and the Accountant of the District Health Insurance Scheme could not account for GH¢66,121 of premium and processing fees.
Mr. Mensah further revealed that the Atwima-Nwabiagya Assembly NHIS overpaid four service providers to the tune of GH¢7,544.30 whilst the Asante Akim North Scheme Manager misappropriated premium and processing fees totaling GH¢7,650.He said the Scheme Manager had transferred GH¢25,906 of claims monies for administrative purpose. Additionally, the Asante Akim South Assembly scheme could not account for GH¢3,393 of premium collected and transferred, and GH¢44,320 for administrative purposes.
The story was the same at the Ejisu-Juaben Assembly, where the scheme could not account for GH¢5,145 of premium collected.The Special Audit exercise also uncovered mismanagement of GH¢133,351.87 meant for claims for administrative purposes by the Afigye/Sekyere Scheme Manager, whilst the Subin Scheme spent GH¢23,702 on preliminary expenses towards the acquisition of land, which is yet to be acquired. Mr. Mensah indicated that the Offinsoman Scheme did business with unaccredited service providers, and it did not submit claims, but did get reimbursed for services provided.
He told the journalists that the authority has recommended that the Asokwa Sub-Metro Assembly Scheme Manager should be interdicted and immediately report to the Serious Fraud Officer (SFO) in Kumasi, whilst the Claims Manager and Accountant were asked to step aside for further investigations.
In the case of the Sekyere East Assembly scheme, the Scheme Managers and the Accountant were subsequently interdicted and should report immediately to the SFO in Kumasi.He directed that the scheme in the district should cease doing business with the following unaccredited health service providers; namely – Yaw Opoku Mensah Chemical Shop, Western Pharmacy and St. Dominic Pharmacy.
The authority also asked the Atwina/Nwabiagya Assembly Scheme Manager, Accountant and Claims Manager to refund the money immediately. Furthermore, the Asante Akim North and Ashante Akim South Assemblies Scheme Managers were also asked to refund the monies they embezzled.
While, the Ejisu/Juaben Scheme Manager and Accountant shall refund the money immediately and the Manhyia Scheme Manager should step aside for investigation to go on.The CEO, therefore, warned that “The authority is determined to reduce fraud in the system. We are going to collaborate with all the relevant regulatory authorities to stem the corruption in the scheme”.
Source: The Chronicles
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