KUWAIT CITY, Jan 7: The Ministry of Health is investigating the ‘embezzlement’ of more than KD 70 million which had been earmarked for dispatching citizens for medical treatment overseas, reports Arab Times daily.
According to investigations hundreds of patients who claimed to be ill and were to be dispatched for treatment, did not leave Kuwait, but pocketed the money. A reliable source said the discovery was made possible because of utmost coordination between the Ministry of Health and ports management branch of the Interior Ministry, which has confirmed that the patients who received the money did not leave Kuwait.
On the other hand, other sources said the Public Prosecutor in a letter addressed to the Minister of Health Dr Jamal Al Harbi has requested to summon a number of ministry officials to interrogation in cases of extortion and bribe.
He pointed out a confidential official letter was sent from the Attorney-General’s office to the health minister to summon the officials for interrogation. Meanwhile, sources said a case has been filed by an official of one of the German companies accusing a former senior official of recruiting Orthopedic doctors to work at the Al-Razi Hospital of receiving KD 200,000 in two batches (a total of KD 400,000) and two other officials of receiving KD 40,000 each as bribe. The money was reportedly deposited in their respective bank accounts.
In the meantime, the Public Authority for Handicapped Affairs must scrutinize around 5,000 handicapped files to uncover the truth in the alleged loss of millions of Kuwaiti dinars due to the growing number of those who pretend to be disabled, reports Al-Shahid daily quoting Director General of the authority Dr Shafeeqa Al-Awadi.
On the health insurance for the handicapped, Al-Awadi stressed the need to reassess the idea in order to cover all people with disabilities. She also suggested discussing the issue with the Health Ministry, taking into consideration the differences in the cases of beneficiaries.