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Minister: Govt owes $16.6m to dialysis centres

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Dialysis facilities will soon be increased at the North West and South West Regional Health Authorities as Government moves rapidly to lessen dependence on private sector dialysis services.

Confirmation came yesterday from Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh.

The development follows recent issues where St Clair Medical Centre (Medcorp Ltd) halted dialysis treatments on patients due to Government’s non-payment of subsidies for this.

Speaking in Parliament yesterday, Deyalsingh said Medcorp is owed $1.2 million. The total owed by Government to all dialysis centres is $16.6 million.

Deyalsingh added: “We’re paying part of all of these outstanding monies over the next week. Medcorp will receive approximately $400,000 within the next week.”

“But what we owed Medcorp has to be taken into consideration with the fact that from 2014 to now we’ve paid Medcorp $7.5million (for dialysis), $20.6 million (radiotherapy) and $576,000 (other surgical procedures),”

“We’ve done $30 million-plus worth of business with Medcorp from 2014. So it’s a bit of a surprise that we have this long rich history with Medcorp, and they would have taken this action. But we’re committed to paying them.”

He said Medcorp also benefitted from a portion of $65.1 million paid for heart surgery to the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex and Medcorp.

“We ask everyone to be mindful of the economic situation,”he added.

The 40 dialysis patients, who had been at Medcorp, were transferred to Port-of-Spain General Hospital and other dialysis centres and none went without treatment, he said.

Deyalsingh said the centres to which patients were taken from Medcorps were glad to do it He said they’d sympathised with Government and assured they wouldn’t take the action Medcorp did, “That’s the kind of patriotism we need in T&T now,” he added.


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