Min Lawrence defends use of private insurance companies

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Minister of Public Health, Volda Lawrence defended the government’s decision to engage the services of private insurance companies.

Responding to a question posed by Opposition Member of Parliament (MP), Juan Edgehill, Minister Lawrence stated that the decision was taken after the current administration took office and was “appraised of expenditures incurred previously for medical and other dental expenses.”

The Health Minister explained that as such:

“Cabinet took the decision to begin a search for various insurance companies that can be able to provide insurance coverage for members of Cabinet and their families… So, it would not place a burden on public funds as transpired in the years previous.”

Minister Lawrence reminded members of the National Assembly that Cabinet sought permission from the house and in the 2018 budget, this matter was “ventilated” for questioning.

The minister said that 50 per cent of the premium is paid by members of the Cabinet and that deductions are made by the Parliament while the other 50 per cent is paid by the other members who are covered.

She remarked that as a result of this decision, there was no request was made for funds to be granted for medical expenses.

“Because of us taking that decision, Mister Speaker, I am happy to report to this honourable house that in June 2015, no request was made to the public funds for medical operations or dental for any of our Ministers. The same thing happened in 2016.”

Minister Lawrence also explained that the premium for the insurance varies as it calculated by the insurance company.

Anara Khan.

Image: Jameel Mohamed.

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