The Eastern Regional Hospital, Koforidua (ERHK), lost about Ghc350,000 to patients who either absconded or could not pay their medical bills due to poverty in 2018.
According to the Hospital, in 2018 about 20 patients sneaked out of their sick beds and absconded with total medical bills of Ghc11,080 while in 2017, 52 patients also absconded at the blind side of the Hospital Authorities with total medical bills of Ghc23,000.
Meanwhile, the Hospital wrote off the medical debt of 13 patients identified to be paupers to the tune of Ghc19,000 after Department of Social Welfare had done background checks to establish their financial status.
Again, in 2018, a total of 212 patients who could not readily pay all their medical bills signed undertaken to pay installment to the total medical debt of Ghc313,000.
Speaking to Journalists in Koforidua, at the annual media interaction by the Hospital, the Medical Director, Dr.Kwame Anim Boamah, noted that most of these patients were not insured adding that out of the 237,870 attendance recorded at the Out of Patients Department in 2018, 33,593 were not insured.
“Those who are not insured most of them couldn’t pay ,they either pay part and then they go and some even run away from the hospital for those who write undertakings that they have made payment and will come and pay the rest.If you put all together it amounted to almost Ghc350,000”.
He said this is having effect on the finances of the Hospital hence has put in place security measures including installation of CCTV cameras on corridors of the hospitals to reduce significantly, the absconders while urging the public to enroll on the National Health Insurance Scheme.
The Eastern Regional Hospital is on course to become one of the health centers of excellence in quality healthcare delivery in Ghana and beyond.
Its Medical Director Dr.Kwame Anim Boamah was adjudged Medical Doctor of the Year at the Fourth National Medical Excellence Awards(MEA) held in in December 2018 in Accra, while his Deputy, Dr.Cardinal Newton, Dental Surgeon was adjudged second runner up in Dental Category.