National Hospital of Iceland ISK 900 million in debt Skip to content

National Hospital of Iceland ISK 900 million in debt

The state-run National Hospital has accrued a total debt of ISK 900 million (USD 15.1 million, EUR 10.9 million), ISK 700 million of which is due to the purchase of medicine and medical equipment through the Federation of Icelandic Trade (FÍS) and related companies.

“This is the fourth, if not the fifth time in five years that I’ve sent a notification about this situation [to the government], but not received any direct response. The hospital will probably get the funds to pay its debts at some point, it’s just a question of when and how much,” managing director of FÍS Andrés Magnússon told Morgunbladid.

Magnússon demands that the government solves this situation once and for all.

“What we are pointing out, and we find peculiar, is that this state institution has to get down on its knees and beg its business partners to find a way to lower the penalty fees on its arrears,” Magnússon said, adding the National Hospital is probably paying between ISK 600,000 and 700,000 (USD 10,100 and 11,700, EUR 7,300 and 8,500) in penalty fees every day on its arrears.

Minister of Health Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson agrees that the situation is serious and not just in relation to debt, he said, because the way the hospital is run in general is problematic.

“It is obvious that it would be more sensible for the National Hospital to take loans from the state than from suppliers. But it is also obvious that short-term solutions are not sufficient to solve a situation like this,” the minister told Morgunbladid.

“The problem is huge and not new and to solve it we need to look at the big picture. We’ve begun working on that,” Thórdarson said, adding finding a better solution for operating the health service in Iceland is one of the most important issues facing the new governmental administration.

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