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Health Insurer Dôvera accused of appropriating public funds

The Healthcare Supervision Office (ÚDZS) says that, by reducing its share capital, the private health insurer Zdravotná Poisťovňa Dôvera appropriated premiums that should have been used to pay health care providers.

The Healthcare Supervision Office (ÚDZS) says that, by reducing its share capital, the private health insurer Zdravotná Poisťovňa Dôvera appropriated premiums that should have been used to pay health care providers.

ÚDZS head Richard Demovič said that transferring Sk1.9 billion (€63.07 million) from share capital to private pocket means that in fact funds that were to be exclusively allocated for payment of health care and for the development of the health sector shrank by this amount, the SITA newswire wrote.

Martin Danko, the spokesman for the Penta group that owns the health insurer, however, argues that share capital is a sum of deposits by all shareholders. Shareholders of ZP Dôvera decided in the past that the profit that the insurer earned would be used to support its share capital, and not for payment of dividends or for purposes of other consumption. In 2008, the shareholders, however, decided to reduce the share capital in compliance with the same principle.

"Thus, it is absolutely incorrect to mistake funds making up the share capital for public sources of a health insurer that it uses to finance provided health care," Danko argued. SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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