|Audit Report Exposes Mismanagement of Hospital Fund|
ST. GEORGE’S, GRENADA, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 3, 2011: An audited report of the Hospital Fund in post-Hurricane Ivan of September 2004 has exposed grave financial mismanagement under the previous administration.
The current government, in deciding the best way forward to service the health needs of the Grenadian people, conducted an assessment of hospital services, Health Minister Ann Peters told the Senate Monday.
She said the report of the audit, covering the period January 2005 to January 2009, revealed that, “Officers directly administering the Hospital Fund Account were not trained and had no documented procedures to guide them in the operation of the fund. As a result, the fund was not properly managed or operated effectively.”
The audited document states: “The lack of proper financial data resulted in unauthorized overdrafts and accompanying interest charges and payments which remained outstanding for extended periods and shortages of essential pharmaceutical supplies.’’
In coming into office in 2008, the new government and the Ministry of Health were “saddled with the shortages. This was not something that we created,’’ Sen. Peters said.
The report also highlighted the need for a review of the hospital regulations, which are said to be outdated. It also calls on the management of the hospital to develop a document, policy and procedure to guide the financial operations of the General Hospital.
Sen. Peters emphasized that the government’s position on meaningful and effective delivery of healthcare is resolute.
She said it’s one of the reasons the Health Ministry is seriously considering healthcare financing, and has commissioned a team of professionals to look at a national health insurance. Other proposals include implementing a billing and admission system with support from the Pan American Health Organization.