By Nomalanga Moyo
6 March 2013
Mpilo Central Hospital authorities have issued another appeal after shocking details emerged of what could be fraud running into millions of dollars at the institution.
Mpilo currently needs at least $5 million and has appealed to well-wishers for donations to help raise its standards to acceptable levels and revive the ailing institution, as SW Radio Africa reported in February.
Now hospital authorities keen to rescue the institution say they have uncovered a scam that could have prejudiced the facility of millions of dollars meant to improve patient care.
It is suspected that the fraudulent activities originated in the accounts department where receipts, phased out in 2009, were still being issued to patients and service providers, according to a NewsDay report.
The hospital’s new chief executive officer, Dr Lawrence Mantiziba, is quoted as saying investigations were instituted after a “patients produced a receipt which is no longer in circulation.”
But so far investigations have yielded nothing with “even the person who is in charge of the receipt books professing ignorance saying he was on leave, and he was.
“We have therefore decided to go open about the issue and call on all people that received any treatment since 2009 to come forward with their receipts for verification,” Mantiziba told the paper.
He said a board would decide whether or not patients in possession of the phased-out receipts should repay, and added that the aim of the exercise was to clean up the rot rather than to victimise people.
“People should come forward and assist us crack down on the scam sooner rather than later,” Mantiziba added.
The hospital has since put up posters advising patients and service providers who were issued receipts with numbers before or after 929076H to contact its finance department, the chief executive’s office, or the police. This includes anyone who was issued a receipt since 2009.
Efforts to get an update from Mantiziba were fruitless as he was busy moving office. – See more