Medical aid societies should own up

EDITORIAL COMMENT

THE impasse between medical doctors affiliated to the Zimbabwe Medical Association (ZIMA) and medical aid societies over the latter’s alleged non-remittance of payments by clients is really disturbing, given the serious implications it will have on patients, should the doctors decide to withdraw their services in protest.

The demand for full payment of all outstanding dues by the doctors will have serious implications on patients, who will fail to access medical services because of the stand-off. This is a matter that needs to be investigated in order to establish why medical aid societies have not been paying the remittances.

It is unbelievable that some of the medical aid societies are said to not having been paying the subscriptions from as far back as 2015. The question that
arises is: What happened to their members’ subscriptions? This is an indicator of gross abuse that needs to be investigated and corrective action taken.

This needs to be done as a matter of urgency because the standoff will have a negative impact on patients who have been faithfully paying their subscriptions.

Because medical insurance firms have been mushrooming over the last few years, attracting many clients, it is strange that they are still not up -to-date when it comes to remitting what is due to the doctors and other health services providers.

Such firms need to be investigated to establish what exactly is happening, otherwise they may end up conning people. Now that the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption
Commission appears to have grown sharper teeth, this is one area they may need to invest their interest in.

The fact that PSMAS, which reportedly owes over $60 million covering the past seven months and was in the past riddled with corruption allegations, is enough
justification to launch an investigation.

With the way ordinary people are struggling, should the doctors enforce their threat to withdraw services, the consequences can only be dire.

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