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Private health providers to benefit from gov't partnership — Tufton

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Christopher Tufton, says private sector entities that partner with the Government to provide certain services to the public health sector, stand to benefit significantly.

The Government is outsourcing some services such as surgeries and diagnostic tests as part of a $1 billion programme to reduce waiting time within thepublic health system.

Tuftonnoted that a number of private providers have “free capacity” of 20 to 40 per cent and in some instances up to 50 per cent, and could therefore benefit greatly from an outsourcing partnership with the Government.

“We are saying we will help you to fill that (free) capacity, you will get economies of scale through numbers; it spreads your cost,” he said.

He was addressing a post-Sectoral press briefing at the Ministry's New Kingston offices on Monday (May 13).

As it relates to day surgeries, Tufton said the Government intends to undertake a competitive process to identify private hospitals and practices that have the capacity to handle these procures.

“We will put a mechanism in place to account for those who are treated in these facilities and they will be compensated based on negotiations,” he noted.

The day surgeries to be provided under the arrangement are hernia, prostate, fibroids, hemorrhoids, gall bladder and orthopedic procedures.

“These were selected based on our assessment of what shows up frequently in the system and where we think we can provide the greatest ease to the population,” Tufton said.

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