Social Security Minister Vincent Wheatley has said almost $9 million is owed to the National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme by its contributors.
Minister Wheatley made that announcement in response to questions from Opposition Leader Marlon Penn in the House of Assembly last Friday.
He said: “The amount owed to the NHI by its contributors is estimated at $8,865,403. Government’s contributions are paid up to May and June. It (the next payment) is not due until July 15th 2020.”
The detailed breakdown of the debt to the NHI was not made available at the time of the sitting. He, however, said the overall sum owed included monies due from the government.
Nearly $4 million owed to medical practitioners
Wheatley, in the meantime, said medical practitioners in the territory were owed almost $4 million from the NHI.
“The local providers were paid up to the end of April 2020. The amount owed for May to June 15th is $3,892,706,” he stated.
Penn then questioned the minister as to when these practitioners will receive their monies owed.
In response, Wheatley sai they will be paid as soon as the funds come in.
$9 million was owed up until May
The Opposition Leader further queried the intended use of the $7.5 million from the Social Security grant that was allocated to the NHI in Phase II of the government’s economic stimulus plan.
Minister Wheatley responded saying the monies from the stimulus plan was used to clear an estimated $9 million debt owed to medical providers up to May 2020.
Meanwhile, Premier Andrew Fahie had stated back in May that the funds allocated to the NHI from the stimulus plan were geared towards benefitting all the medical providers, pharmacies and other entities, regardless of the size of their businesses.