Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital in Eldoret has given a 50 per cent waiver on outstanding medical bills owed to the hospital by patients as part of efforts to boost debt collection.
Wilson Aruasa, the hospital’s director, has asked relatives and guardians of dozens of patients at the facility to take advantage of the offer that will be valid from January 16 to March 3.
Dr Aruasa said patients owe the hospital close to Sh200 million, adding that they had embarked on a sensitisation programme aimed at encouraging people seeking medical services at the facility to register with the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF).
Addressing the Press in his office on Wednesday, Dr Aruasa said the pending bills which date back to over 20 years have hampered the hospital’s efforts to offer key services.
“Most of the people seeking various health care services at the hospital are not aware of the importance of enlisting with NHIF which is able to cater for part of their medical bills,” said Dr Aruasa. He said the hospital was willing to release documents being withheld as security to owners.
“We are currently holding at least 20,000 title deeds, log books and ID cards for patients who used the documents as security after failing to clear their bills,” he said.
The director said the hospital was forced to write off Sh100 million debts arising from medical bills owed to the facility by patients.
He asked those whose ID cards are still being held by the hospital over unpaid bills to collect them to enable them enlist as voters a head of the impending General Election.
The move comes after Uasin Gishu County Assembly passed a motion to compel hospitals to release IDs.
MCAs expressed fear that many Kenyans were likely to be locked out of the ongoing voter registration exercise, which ends on February 14, due to lack of IDs.
The motion, moved by Soy ward representative Isaac Chirchir, also sought to compel officials of the medical facilities to waive bills of affected patients.
“There are over 20,000 IDs being withheld at the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital alone,” said Mr Chirchir, adding that other hospitals in the county have over 10,000 IDs.