By NQOBANI NDLOVU
ONE of Zimbabwe’s oldest medical aid societies, Masca, has assured its members that it is timeously remitting payments to doctors and other healthcare providers and hence should be able to access treatment anywhere and anytime without any problems.
This followed claims by the Zimbabwe Medical Association (ZiMA) that medical aid providers were not remitting payments, a situation resulting in clients being denied treatment. Douglas Bremson, Masca chief executive told Southern Eye that members had no need to worry over being denied healthcare services as the 73
year old organisation was remitting payments to doctors and health delivery institutions for services delivered.
Bremson said Masca was not in any debt with the doctors, among them specialists and all health delivery institutions.
“We are currently paying July claims as we receive them. Masca does two payment-runs every month to pay healthcare providers and refund members who have paid
for the services they have received,” Bremson said in an interview.
“We are up to date with payments to the healthcare providers. We appreciate all our members and member firms who strive to get their contributions paid to us
on time every month, so we are able to assist in paying providers on time.
“As a responsible medical aid, we have always held reserves, in accordance with our regulating body’s requirements and we regularly review our contribution
levels to ensure we remain viable and that we can pay the necessary increases in tariff for healthcare providers and tertiary health institutions, especially
in times of spiralling inflation.”
Bremson said Masca had also taken measures to hedge against any challenges resulting from monetary policy announcements such as Statutory Instrument 142, which
outlawed the use of foreign currencies.
“Prior to SI 142, Masca had offered members the option of paying their monthly contributions in US$ and ZWL$. Those paying in US$ obviously had access to international tariffs and we were assisting healthcare providers to source the much needed US$ to keep their businesses viable. This was paid in the form of
claims payment in US$ for our US$ contributing members,” he said.
“We had also even assisted healthcare providers for our local members who were contributing a compulsory US$ component to their contributions. This meant they
had access to general practitioners, laboratories, radiological services and hospitals without paying a co-payment. Since the introduction of SI 142, we still
have International members who contribute more Zimdollars for international benefits and local members who still have local benefits for a lower Zimdollar