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Healthcare, judicial costs require additional government funding

Government’s decision to pay full health insurance premiums to CINICO has resulted in the need for additional funds for the budget years 2018 and 2019.

Proposals sought for revamp of CINICO

The Cayman Islands government has issued a request for business case proposals to reform its health insurance provider, CINICO.

EDITORIAL – Finding a cure for skyrocketing healthcare costs

But there is no question that something must be done to stop the out-of-control growth in government’s healthcare obligations and expenditures. Our current path is simply not sustainable.

Healthcare costs a ‘massive social issue’ warns Premier

Government is investigating a national health insurance system among a number of potential solutions to curb spiralling healthcare costs.

EDITORIAL – ‘Wait a minute’: What’s going on with board records?

A review of minutes from CINICO Board of Directors’ meetings in 2018 reveals two “categories” of record-taking: The first verbosely recounting board discussions and reports from then-CEO Lonny Tibbetts; the second, offering terse (even cryptic) summaries of the board’s actions during a handful of extraordinary meetings last fall leading to Mr. Tibbetts’ termination.

CINICO holds seven meetings before firing boss

The board of national health insurance company CINICO held a series of seven extraordinary meetings in September and October before firing CEO Lonny Tibbetts. Documents provided to the Cayman Compass under the Freedom of Information Law reveal a fraught series of meetings within the space of two weeks after unspecified allegations emerged against Mr. Tibbetts.
Cayman Islands Hospital

Healthcare costs rise as ‘indigent’ population grows

The amount government spends on funding healthcare for uninsured patients will continue to increase, a senior public health official warned Thursday.

EDITORIAL – What we’re watching out for in 2019

As a rule, Compass editors are cautious about indulging in the temptation of attempted prognostication. However, there are some issues and themes, classified as “in progress” or “recurring,” that we expect to find ourselves writing about in the coming year.

Too Late

Today's editorial cartoon.
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EDITORIAL – Another $4.53M in life support for CINICO

At this point it may seem somewhat obvious to observe that something is seriously wrong with Cayman’s healthcare system generally, and with Cayman’s public health insurer specifically.

Government injects more capital into CINICO

Cabinet approved an equity investment of $4.53 million into Cayman Islands National Insurance Company to raise the public sector health insurer’s capital base above the minimum level prescribed by the regulator.

EDITORIAL – CINICO CEO fired: Government’s ‘silent treatment’

The government’s cursory announcement of the firing of Lonny Tibbetts (after eight years’ leading CINICO) masquerades as information, but it is actually an insult – to the public’s intelligence, and to the public’s right to know.

CINICO boss Lonny Tibbetts fired without public explanation

Lonny Tibbetts, the longtime CEO of government’s health insurance company CINICO, has been summarily fired.

Health premium-sharing plan stalls

No deal has been reached on a proposal to make Cayman Islands civil servants pay for a portion of their healthcare premiums, despite claims by the previous government administration that such a move would be imperative in balancing upcoming budgets.

Government agencies reject CINICO

Efforts to lower taxpayer-funded healthcare premiums by encouraging government entities under private sector coverage plans to join the government-run insurer have failed, according to Cayman Islands National Insurance Company Chief Executive Lonny Tibbetts.

Public sector losing $38.5 million on health insurance costs

Cayman Islands public sector entities will lose a combined $38.5 million over the next three years, largely because the government insurer expects to pay much more to cover future healthcare premiums for uninsured residents.

Canadian cannabis company begins exports to Cayman

Canada’s medicinal cannabis producers have joined Jamaica in testing the Cayman Islands as an export market.

CINICO legal bills top $250K, lawsuits not yet resolved

Legal bills have reached more than $250,000 in dueling lawsuits in the United States between the Cayman Islands National Insurance Company and Simplifi, which administered payments for the insurer. Simplifi sued CINICO in an Ohio federal court in July 2013, accusing CINICO of canceling a contract without notice and owing Simplifi more than $150,000.

Healthcare leaders will join hospital board

Four senior medical and civil service officials will be placed on the Health Services Authority board of directors in order to “help avoid the mistakes of the past,” according to Health Ministry Councilor Roy McTaggart.

CINICO lawsuit continues after three years

Three years after a U.S.-based management firm sued the Cayman Islands National Insurance Company, CINICO continues to fight the case in the U.S. federal court.

$13 million for seamen, veterans healthcare

The Cayman Islands government has budgeted to spend more than $13 million a year to cover 1,075 retired seamen, former veterans and their widows, according budget records.

CINICO reports home care ‘fraud’ to police

The Cayman Islands National Insurance Company has reported a case of suspected fraud in its home healthcare program to police after a patient who was supposed to be receiving the care said that had not happened.

Few EY report ‘priorities’ under way

Recommendations from a September 2014 government consultant’s report by the Ernst & Young accounting firm have been pared down to 57 areas which the civil service intends to “progress,” according to a report released last week.

Health coverage not mandated for employed spouses

Cayman Islands employers – including the government service – are not required by the local Health Insurance Law to provide healthcare coverage to employed spouses of island residents, Health Insurance Commissioner Mervyn Conolly said Saturday.

Government ‘double charged’ itself on healthcare payments

The Cayman Islands government has been “double charging” itself in relation to payments made on behalf of those who cannot afford healthcare coverage.

EDITORIAL – Opting out of public healthcare

It’s official: Not even the government wants to be locked into the government’s healthcare system.

HSA employees do not use gov’t insurance

A number of Cayman Islands public authorities, including the Health Services Authority, do not maintain employee health insurance with the government-run Cayman Islands National Insurance Company.

EDITORIAL – The verdict on the verdict: A good start

The conviction of former Health Services Authority chairman Canover Watson for fraud and breach of trust answers one question about the public hospital system’s CarePay scheme, but raises a legion of others about corruption, complicity, indifference and incompetence in the highest levels of the Cayman Islands officialdom.

CarePay trial: Testimony reveals little scrutiny for US$13M contract

The former chairman of the Cayman Islands National Insurance Company told a Grand Court jury Friday that he “scanned over” a copy of the US$13-million contract for the CarePay patient swipe-card system less than 24 hours prior to signing it in December 2010.

CarePay trial: Contract was 'highway robbery,' witness says

Fees that were expected to generate more than US$2 million a year for a Jamaican company providing services to the Cayman Islands public hospital system under the CarePay contract were called “highway robbery” by a Crown witness who testified Thursday in an ongoing criminal trial.

CarePay trial: Witness says 'half dozen' companies wanted CarePay deal

About “half a dozen” companies, both local and international, had expressed interest on bidding for a Cayman Islands public hospital patient swipe-card contract prior to the contract being awarded to a Jamaican-St.Lucian firm, according to the former chief information officer for the local Health Services Authority.

CarePay trial: Minister Archer raised questions about swipe-card company

The former head of the Cayman Islands National Insurance Company said she was contacted last year by Finance Minister Marco Archer about the CarePay swipe-card contract for the local public hospital system.

CarePay trial: 'Everyone' supported CarePay system, claims defense

Defense attorneys in the CarePay trial say Canover Watson was made the scapegoat for the failures of many.

CarePay trial: Health Ministry duped into paying $1.2M, claims Crown

Cayman Islands businessman Canover Watson deceived local government officials into paying an additional US$1.2 million for the expansion of a public hospital patient swipe-card system by “doctoring” copies of the initial CarePay card contract and sending it to Ministry of Health officials in August 2011, Crown prosecutors said Thursday.

CarePay trial: Football cash funneled into 'sham' account, claims Crown

Prosecutors said Wednesday that US$250,000 from the Cayman Islands Football Association found its way into a Fidelity Bank account initially set up to take in payments from the public healthcare system for the CarePay patient swipe-card contract.

Crown: Watson, Webb used company to defraud public sector

Canover Watson, with help from his friend Jeffrey Webb and former personal assistant Miriam Rodriguez, used a company he and Webb set up to “defraud public bodies of large amounts of money” jurors heard in the first day of a corruption trial.

Fifty-six jurors excused from Watson and Rodriguez trial

A jury panel was chosen on Friday for the trial of Canover Watson and Miriam Rodriguez, but not before 56 of 70 potential jurors were excused. The seven jurors and two reserves chosen were scheduled to begin hearing the matter on Monday, Nov. 23.

Cleveland Clinic wants to attract Cayman's sickest patients

With an expanding campus in South Florida, the Cleveland Clinic hopes to attract more patients from the Cayman Islands.

Report on farmed turtle deaths kept from public

The infection that hit the turtle farm last year, killing 1,268 green sea turtles over four months, did not come to light for almost a year and a half. The information was finally revealed in a Freedom of Information Law request and subsequent appeal for Cayman Turtle Farm board meeting minutes. The board presentation on the infection was initially redacted, but later handed over along with a host of other information after an appeal.

An argument against cruise berthing facilities

Caymanian Bo Miller makes an argument for why the cruise berthing project should not go ahead.

Civil servants balk at healthcare co-pays

The Cayman Islands Civil Service Association says it will consider paying for healthcare, as long as it is not provided by the government Health Services Authority.

Manderson: Health co-pays will take time

Cayman's deputy governor says proper planning is needed before changing the government's healthcare system.

Cayman's public health system in critical condition

The government has pushed back an important deadline, delaying the enactment of much-needed reforms to public healthcare.

Cayman Airways tightens up medical fare requirements

Cayman Airways now requires passengers applying for the airline’s discounted, flexible air fares for medical cases to submit their requests via insurance providers or the Health Services Authority.

Civil service healthcare payments put off

What looked to be an extremely difficult political decision for the Progressives-led administration has been put off until well after the May 2017 general election, government leaders announced Friday.

CINICO suit may depend on an email

A lawsuit in a United States federal court in Ohio, pitting the Cayman Islands National Insurance Company against its former claims administrator Simplifi, hinges on whether an email was suitable to give notice and cancel the contract.

CINICO legal bills mount in US lawsuit

Records made available through the Freedom of Information law show CINICO spent $155,000 so far on legal fees in a fight with it's former administration company in the U.S. The CEO will travel to the States next week for mediation.

Employer fined $8,500 for no health insurance

An employer was fined $8,500 for failure to have health insurance for an employee, himself and his dependents.

Health City marks one year

Health City Cayman Islands offically opened its doors one year ago. Since then, the hospital has seen more than 2,500 patients and performed almost 200 operations.

The high price of CINICO not paying its bills

It appears that not only are CINICO’s creditors knocking on the door; they’re about ready to kick it down and carry away whatever they find inside.

CINICO sued third time for unpaid bills

Five Florida hospitals are suing CINICO for unpaid medical bills, following two similar suits late last year.

Healthcare payout eligibility not monitored

Cayman's government is paying healthcare coverage for nearly 1,200 poor and disabled people, but it's not certain how many of them qualify for aid.

Audit: Hospital using too much paper

Government auditors reveal the local hospital system is burying itself in needless paperwork.

Top Story of 2014: CarePay criminal probe rattles gov't

The Cayman Islands Health Services Authority, and the local government generally, were shaken by revelations of a criminal probe into the hospital system's swipe card contract.

Top story of 2014: Health City Cayman Islands opened

Health City Cayman Islands celebrated its grand opening on Feb. 25 this year.

Healthcare co-pays, benefit reductions recommended

The harsh realities of healthcare costs are about to hit Cayman Islands government workers.

Three-quarters of Cayman Islands civil service earns below $50,000 per year

Most Cayman Islands civil servants are making less than $50,000 per year.

CINICO says it will settle Miami hospital bills lawsuit

CINICO says it will pay the two South Florida hospitals after they sued the insurance company for almost US$1.5 million.

Two US hospitals sue CINICO for unpaid bills

Two hospitals in Miami sued CINICO for almost $1.5 million in unpaid bills.

Premier: No more ‘ad hoc’ management

Government authorities will be seeing big changes in their hiring and healthcare plans in the coming months.

Former premier’s wife in hospital overseas

Former Premier McKeeva Bush's wife was flown off island for medical treatment Saturday morning after falling down steps at the couple’s West Bay home.

Local air ambulance service takes off

Cayman’s first locally based air ambulance is now offering evacuation services to local patients.

Prescription for a healthier Cayman: More competition

No government should pick winners and losers in the private sector. That principle extends to our government's relationship with Health City Cayman Islands and other local practitioners.

Taxpayers’ bill doubles to insure retired civil servants

Cayman Islands taxpayers are footing nearly double the bill for retired civil servants when it comes to paying for health insurance premiums.

Health City, CINICO seek deal

The government is in talks with Health City Cayman Islands over local patient referrals.

Ministry silent on CarePay contract

Cayman's government refuses to explain a sudden switch in healthcare contractors.

Police query large payment in CarePay case

More questions arise in the police investigation of the public hospital swipe-card contract.

CarePay profits go to St. Lucia company

Most of the money from Cayman's swipe-card hospital payment system went to a foreign company.

CINICO changes providers amid CarePay controversy

A contract dispute brews over the Cayman Islands government healthcare system patient swipe cards.

AIS: System should cut ‘bad debts’

A hospital patient swipe-card system should have reduced Cayman's bad debts from medical bills, according to the company that implemented it.

Civil servants debate EY report

Civil servants gather to debate the benefits and drawbacks of outsourcing government functions and public sector downsizing.

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