Dr. Sonia Díaz, who also has a master’s degree in Hospital Center Administration, serves EXPRESO by telephone from Quito. Delve into the issues that, you need, are your competence. He talks about the amounts to be paid and new figures that he says are still in the process of being defined.
– Last March it was made public that the State owes three institutions in Guayaquil, including Solca, about $ 258 million. A $ 50 million advance was recently made to insure future patient care. But what about the debt? When will it be canceled?
– For now we are reviewing documents. The debt is not as many millions as it is said. To define this figure, it is necessary to analyze several processes, the consistency of documents and the medical technical pertinence, for example. Once this is reviewed, the news is notified to the providers and what is new, paid and what is not checked again. In that process we are.
– The amount of the debt then is another. What number do they handle?
– It’s still being identified. There are accounts from previous years that not only depend on the MSP, but on other public entities. And in their accounts, many times the private establishments add them up and say the public entity owes me so much. We are verifying that. Solca, for example, includes as debt what we have objected, even so we are already working on schedules. At Solca we will begin to liquidate you within 2 or 3 months.
– And the León Becerra? Today we know that this center is maintained only by an advance that the IESS has made …
– On May 23, I met with the authorities and we also have a work schedule to give an advance. It is agreed that we have to settle the pending accounts because that is what corresponds. However, the mechanism to give the system liquidity must be changed.
Because of the debt, the affected hospitals were forced to dispense with a considerate number of their staff. Likewise, the León Becerra has run the risk of closing its doors because the long-awaited payment ($ 9 million) has not yet arrived. Díaz is betting today on the modifications of the mechanisms to generate solvency.
– Among those changes is to establish in the regulatory framework that funding institutions can make advance payments …
– That’s right, something that was not possible before. But we are also improving the mechanisms to allocate resources that come from the Monetary and Financial Organic Code, and the audit times to organize the files that they send to collect.
– But whatever the amount, why did you get to this state?
– The issue is complex and does not only depend on the public sector. There were difficulties with the structuring of the files. Sometimes one of the documents sent to us by private entities was an objection and this delayed the process.
In addition, one or another file was lost, there was no experience. It was difficult to even keep the teams of medical auditors, you have to admit it.
– However, there are those who say that the crisis was reached because too many hospitals were built even when there was not enough staff to attend to them … – Health is a right guaranteed by the State and in line with this the services have been extended, according to a technically developed plan. I do not agree with the affirmation of a generalized negative perception, because in our work we receive samples of recognition for attention. In recent years many establishments have opened and we do not have all the specialists we would like, but these are being prepared in the different postgraduate programs that the State finances, we have people studying to fill those offices. –
Does a crisis consider what they are experiencing?
– No. The procedures for payment are being processed properly, the actions taken are even helping to close expired agreements.
– But do they feel capable of facing such debt?
– We are recognizing accounts to settle and payments, that approves our capacity in the process.
– What do you think about the reform of the Health and Social Security project, proposed by the Assembly?
Some lawmakers believe that these problems will be avoided if “no government touches the money that belongs to the affiliates” … – It is not up to me to comment on the management of another entity.
Social Security has its own axes of control and mechanisms to act according to the case. Before finishing the interview, EXPRESO requested, once again, the official figure that the MSP is considering regarding the debt to know what is the difference with the current amount of the centers.
However Diaz considered that, taking into account that they maintain the dialogue with the entities, “being in a process of contradiction is not the most appropriate”. (I)