Accountants are refusing to sign off on the 2012 accounts for every Dutch hospital because they do not trust the figures, according to a confidential letter from accountants’ organisation NBA which is in the hands of tv programme Nieuwsuur.
The accounting system in hospitals was altered radically for 2012. Hospital charges were changed, 70% of charges were left to the free market and hospitals worked with two sets of books to facilitate the change-over.
In addition, three different computer systems were introduced to cope with the new administration system.
This has led to a lack of clarity, particularly in the interpretation of the rules, says the NBA. Hospitals were warned there could be problems at the end of 2011, says the organisation, but little action was taken.
If the figures are not accepted by accountants, health insurers cannot pay out money owed to hospitals and banks will increase their lending rates, putting hospitals in financial problems, reports the NRC.
The health ministry is now in urgent talks with all parties to find a solution by mid-February when accounts must be sent to the health insurers.
Hospitals are also currently under fire for sending inflated bills to health insurers.