Gauteng health wants R1.1 billion owed by patients
The Gauteng health department is seeking to collect R1.1 billion it is owed in outstanding patient fees.
The collection would be made from medical aids, state organs and other government departments before the end of the 2012/13 financial year, spokesman Simon Zwane said.
"R450 million has been collected from April to date from the R2 billion the department is owed," he said.
The bulk of the money came from the Road Accident Fund, which paid more than R360 million. Medical schemes paid more than R86 million.
A total of R200 million was still outstanding.
Payments had been received from the provincial governments of Limpopo, North West, and Mpumalanga.
The SA Police Service, correctional services, and justice department had also made payments.
Zwane said about R907 million might not be recoverable.
"These fees are owed by indigent or untraceable patients and by medical aids schemes which have been liquidated."
He said the department had enlisted the services of Alexander Forbes and Medikredit to help in the collection.
"A joint team has been established to reconcile and clear all outstanding claims owed by the Road Accident Fund before September 2012."
Steve Biko, Dr George Mukhari, Charlotte Maxeke, and Chris Hani Baragwanath were the four big hospitals who owed about 50 percent of the debts.
"This is because these hospitals offer specialised services and are used as referral centres to treat more complicated health problems."
The national health department had approached the Treasury to grant the province permission to charge interest.
"A response from the national treasury is awaited."