Categorized | National News

PMH Needs More Revenue

Health Minister, Doctor  Duane Sands has refuted  claims of  rising costs for patients  at the Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH) – at least not yet. 

“What we have talked about is the fact that in order for PMH, the rest of the PHA, and the health care system to function, it needs to have the funds to exist,” he said.

“We have to pay staff, we have to pay nurses, we have to pay doctors, we have to pay administrative staff and other health care professionals. 

“We have to provide medication, that doesn’t come out of the sky, at this point if we look strictly at the PHA, there’s a funding gap of approximately 50 million dollars and we either have to close that gap by reducing expenditure, increasing revenue or getting rid of services.

As for those who are against the whole idea of about paying more, the minister said 87 percent of people who visit PMH pay nothing, and that’s because they don’t pay, can’t pay or are exempted from paying. 

“It’s difficult to say or to complain that a particular service needs to be upgraded when the legislated or mandated contribution that I’m supposed to be making, I’m not making. 

“If I’m supposed to pay ten dollars for a service that costs $1,000, then I should pay that ten dollars.

“Now there are some people who can’t pay it, and there will always be people who cannot pay it, but that doesn’t mean that 87 percent of the population cannot pay.”

Dr. Sands said in some instances the fees will increase, but for now, they’re working on getting everything in order before these changes are fully implemented. 

“In some instances, they’re going to increase, in some instances they’re going to stay the same.

“We are now looking at the recommended fee schedule changes to ensure that we’re complaint with the law, that they don’t violate any existing agreements whether that’s in various union agreements or existing policies. 

“So, when we actually roll it out, we want to make sure that we don’t have to roll it back, but fundamentally, what we’re trying to do is to improve the quality of care that’s delivered to regular Bahamian people,” said the Minister.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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