The Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital board is considering enlisting the services of debt collectors to help it recover Sh700 million in accumulated debts. The hospital’s newly appointed Chief Executive Officer Wilson Aruasa said the debts, some of which date back more than 20 years, had paralysed key operations at the country’s second largest referral facility.
He revealed that State agencies and private companies owe the hospital Sh400 million in unpaid bills while individuals owe Sh300 million. The hospital boss was speaking Friday at the Uasin Gishu County headquarters in Eldoret town during the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the hospital, and Uasin Gishu County government, and the Academic Model for the Prevention and Treatment of HIV (AMPATH).
At the function attended by Governor Jackson Mandago, County Secretary Peter Leley, County Executive Committee member in-charge of Health Margaret Chepkwony, AMPATH director Dr Sylvester Kimaiyo and Indiana University Executive Field Director AMPHATH Consortium Dr Adrian Gardner, Aruasa said the MoU would focus on capacity building for the hospital and county staff. “As an institution, we are also facing challenges in terms of paying suppliers.
The board is considering enlisting the services of debt collectors,” he said, adding that the hospital is in dire need of the funds. Aruasa said the hospital is using the strategy of physically visiting clients who have pending medical bills to discuss a payment schedule. But in cases where the clients are found to be unresponsive, the hospital would engage the services of debt collectors.
“What we intend to do in the future is to minimise debts to ensure every company gives a significant deposit to the hospital before we offer services to their employees,” said Aruasa. The CEO revealed that the hospital had already given notices to corporate clients who owe the medical facility debts to clear them up or deal with debt collectors.
Two months ago, Aruasa called upon patients from North Rift and Western regions, who owe the facility Sh180million, to collect collateral withheld by the hospital. He said 34,000 national identity cards, vehicle logbooks, land title deeds and other collateral are being held by the hospital.
“This month alone, we waived 50 per cent so that people could come and collect their collateral including national identity cards but only on one condition: that they are active members of NHIF,” said Aruasa.