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Monday, December 6, 2021
Home General KHMH seeks $500k reimbursement for COVID - 19 Unit

KHMH seeks $500k reimbursement for COVID – 19 Unit

BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Oct. 14, 2021– This week, the new CEO of the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH) will officially take over the management of the national referral hospital. The selection of Mrs. Chandra Nisbet Cansino for the post took place after months of interviews were conducted by the hospital’s board following a shakeup of its upper management. Readers would recall that the KHMH board decided not to renew the contacts of three senior managers, at the time citing a need to revitalize the leadership of the hospital and address the issue of hemorrhaging finances that had been exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“On the 15th Mrs. Chandra Cansino takes up her position as CEO. I am certain that I speak for the staff in saying that we are very glad and happy that she is on board with us and as well I can say that perhaps even the wider community is embracing her coming on to the KHMH compound,” Dr. Sosa, chairman of the board of governors of the KHMH, told local media this week.

It is to be noted that shortly after it became known that the contracts of the hospital’s previous CEO, Michelle Cox Hoare, as well as its Director of Nursing, Charlene Banks, and its Human Resources Director, Candice Miller, would not be renewed, the hospital’s Financial Comptroller, Mike Thomas, promptly resigned from his post, and Dr. Sosa indicated, during an appearance on a local talk show, that in the wake of the shakeup the hospital is seeking to salvage its collection system and begin to focus on debt collection. He indicated that millions of dollars are owed to the institution.

He announced this week that a new financial comptroller would also be joining the team at the KHMH, and he further explained that the hospital is focused on creating various debt collection strategies to implement across the system in an effort to collect as much of the unpaid revenue of the hospital as possible. These efforts have been ongoing for the last several months according to Dr. Sosa, and the new KHMH financial comptroller will be tasked with finalizing the strategy.

“We know that collection in these troubled economic times will be difficult, so we will not focus on just one strategy but on as many strategies as is possible so that we can get the monies necessary for investment to grow the hospital.” Dr. Sosa said.

The hospital is also seeking to collect reimbursement from the Government of Belize of half a million dollars that was spent by the hospital to create and retrofit the COVID-19 unit. Dr. Sosa said that while the government has paid back a portion of the almost two million dollars used to create the unit, the remainder of the money is needed to get important work done.

“We have spent over a million dollars — probably closer to two million dollars now — in preparing the COVID-19 unit, in supplying it with the different medications, protective gear and so on, and it is true to say that we [have] gotten reimbursement of some of that expenditure. However, we are still owed about $500,000 for those expenditures that we have incurred. We are hoping that at some point we will be able to get back those monies, because not having access to those funds means that we are unable to do some of the other work that is necessary, and it also places us in a difficult position with regards to being able to fulfil our obligation to the people,” Dr. Sosa stated.

While the government pays a subvention to the KHMH of almost 2.4 million dollars monthly, Dr. Sosa said that 90-95% of those funds is used to cover salaries of the staff at the hospital.

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