Home » General » Chimedza Speaks On Medical Fees

Medical aid societies must pay the newly gazetted tariffs, while doctors should stop charging co-payments and billing shortfalls on patients, a senior Government official has said. Health and Child Care Deputy Minister Dr Paul Chimedza told The Herald yesterday that Government did not increase medical tariffs, but simply intervened in the talks between the societies and doctors to come up with a common fee.

A common tariff entails doctors charging the fee that will be reimbursed by medical aid societies

Consultations for general practitioners are now US$35 and medical aid societies are compelled to reimburse the same amount to service providers, hence no patient will incur extra costs by way of shortfalls or co-payments.

Dr Chimedza said general practitioners wanted an increase of up to US$60, but Government realised most people could not afford.

“Government has not increased medical tariffs, what we simply did was to come up with a common tariff since these two parties where failing to agree on one,” he said.

Most service providers have effected the new tariffs, but medical aid societies are yet to reimburse at that scale. A snap survey yesterday showed patients were forking out co-payments of up to US$15.

Association of Health Care Funders of Zimbabwe chief executive officer Mrs Shylet Sanyanga could not be drawn into commenting, referring questions to the Health Ministry.

According to the Zimbabwe Medical Doctors Association, the tariff that has been in use since 2009 was put in place by AHFoz.

Since the AHFoz rate was lower than what doctors wanted, patients were made to pay the difference in co-payments and shortfalls.

According to the new tariffs, consultation at hospital or nursing homes per day is now US$40, up from US$20. Doctor’s consultation fees go up to US$60 on weekends and US$70 at night.

A visit to a physician paediatrician will cost US$120 up from US$100, while a subsequent consultation at rooms for the same illness is now US$70, down from US$80.

Source : The Herald