Dominant health insurance provider Medical Aid Society of Malawi (Masm) has reported a K1 billion loss for six months from January to June this year.
In a presentation during a breakfast meeting the society organised for its members in the Northern Region at Sunbird Mzuzu on Tuesday, Masm chief commercial officer Andrew Ngomwa warned that the situation, if not checked, has the potential to see the society failing to pay service providers.
He said: “Our half year loss from January to June this year is at K1 billion. It is a worrisome situation that needs to be reversed with a cooperative approach as soon as possible.”
Ngomwa said Masm paid out K2 billion more than the contributions collected from its members for various expenditures.
He said the payouts are mainly on claims from medical providers, half of whom are private hospitals.
The official also revealed that the society made a loss of K2 billion in 2017 after a K500 million loss in 2016, bringing the cumulative loss from 2016 to June this year to K3.5 billion.
Said Ngomwa: “Our current financial status is that we are paying out everything we are receiving from our members, leaving the society with no reserves.”
Speaking on behalf of Masm members, Ireen Jere asked the society’s management to organise a separate meeting to discuss the financial situation and the best way forward.
She said: “Meanwhile, the services you are providing us are not up to standard and now you are telling us that you are making losses. This is not healthy for the society. We, therefore, ask Masm management to organise another meeting so that we have enough time to suggest solutions.”
Masm chief executive officer Sydney Chikoti said measures were already in place to turn around the performance of the society.
He said: “The management of the society is working day and night to reverse the current situation. We have put in place measures to address issues of performance.
“To begin with, we have increased contribution rates effective July 1 with executive scheme hiked by 25 percent, VIP by 35 percent and econo-plan by 10 percent.
“In the long-term, we have created a category of service providers called Premium Private Hospitals where shortfalls will be applicable on all out-patient services.”
Chikoti also explained to members some developments the society has undertaken, including increased ambulance cover, removal of shortfalls on drugs and an increase on foreign cover.
Masm has a membership of about 130 000.