The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) is seeking a fiat from the Attorney General’s Office to prosecute its own cases especially those that have to do with false claims from subscribers.
Chief Executive Officer of the NHIA, Dr. Samuel Annor said it costs the Authority between GH6,000 to GH¢20,000 to prosecute a case depending on the number of times it is adjourned.
Dr. Annor explained that with the fiat, the NHIA will be able to prosecute its own cases faster and at a lower cost.
Speaking to Journalists at the open of a three- day training for the legal department of the NHIA, Dr. Annor said it is working to strengthen its internal structures to ensure that false claims become a thing of the past.
He said with an amendment, it is the hope of the NHIA, that the minimum sentence for defaulters should be two years.
Dr. Annor said any staff who is found to have engaged in fraudulent acts will not be spared. He said the staff are being trained to be diligent in the handling of claims.
“You should be very diligent when you are dealing with money, so that in the end you will not come and say you didn’t know, because it’s not going to be internal fines anymore, if there is criminal intent there will be prosecution,” he cautioned the staff.
Dr Annor said the NHIA is also cautioning providers to very diligent in the claims they put in. He said the NHIA is prosecuting a number of cases on false claims.
However, he said the slow pace and sometimes the fines are not deterrent enough.
Chief State Attorney at the Attorney General’s Department Evelyn Keelson said the AG is the mandated state institution to prosecute all government cases. However, because of the limited number of lawyers at the AG’s department it is prudent to delegate some powers to other state agencies to work on it behalf.
She said the Attorney General granting the fiat to the NHIA to prosecute they own cases will give them the time and focus deal with the cases expeditiously.
By Felix Cofie