In the news today, a report claims that the NHS in the United Kingdom is losing £5 billion (6.99% of the NHS’s £100 billion a year budget) to fraud. Is this really happening? If it is so many people in the medical profession and medical administration must be behaving unethically. So what are they doing?
Sometimes medical ethics concentrate on difficult medical decisions (ending a life and abortion for example), whereas most unethical medical behaviour is seen in simple everyday acts.
- Doctors claiming to treat patients who do not exist
- Clamming for more treatments than was actually carried out. In one instance a world-renowned heart specialist claimed £1.1 million for work that was never done.
- Failing to declare prescription charges that have been paid
- False allowance claims
- Procurement scams, such as under-providing goods and services
- Fraud by patients through false claims for free prescriptions, dental care and optical services
- Being paid a full-time salary but moonlighting in other hospitals
- Carrying out treatments that do not need to be done
How disheartening is that! Yes, the majority of medical colleagues are ethical and doing a great job. But what is it that makes a person who commits at the start of their careers to helping people, behave unethically to the extent that it reduces funds available to treat more sick people.