The system for the assessment of the health and physical qualification of the officials in the services of the Ministry of the Interior (MoI) does not ensure the achievement of the objective specified in the law – the service comprises officials whose physical qualification, health and psychological characteristics meet the specified requirements – the State Audit Office (SAO) has concluded after the audit.
The SAO has found that, in 2010, 18 % of the officials in service at the subordinated institutions of the MoI had not passed the physical qualification standards, of those 28 % were at the State Police, 9 % at the State Border Guard, and 1 % at the State Fire and Rescue Service. There are also officials in service who have not made health examination and psychological compliance testing for a long time.
In accordance with regulatory enactments, patient charges and co-payments for officials are covered from the State budget, and certain healthcare services are reimbursed for an amount up to LVL 50 per year. The SAO notes that unequal treatment exists, because in cases where officials have made patient charges and co-payments at medical institutions that are not co-contractors of the MoI Health and Sports Centre, these expenses unjustifiably have been included in the limit of reimbursable expenses.
When assessing the provision of and payment for healthcare services provided for in regulatory enactments, the SAO draws attention to the insufficient control over the using of State budget funds. During the audit, inappropriate expenses were detected: patient charges and co-payments were covered for officials after their retirement from the service; in some cases, amounts were reimbursed that did not match those in the supporting documents; in several instances, the treatment of officials at in-patient institutions was paid for even though they had not submitted a sick-leave certificate to their place of work and continued to receive remuneration for this time.
The MoI Health and Sports Centre has not ensured good quality performance of the functions and tasks laid down in the by-laws and full collection of revenues from the chargeable services provided, and it has not performed an economic assessment of the chargeable services provided. For example, the direct cost expenses for training the security staff, related with the provision of chargeable services, exceeds the revenues from the services provided by at least LVL 12,700. In addition, episodes were identified where the qualification of a security employee were assigned to persons who had not taken the qualification examination.
Following the audit, the SAO has issued several recommendations to the MoI which, if implemented, would improve the model of funding mandatory health checks for officials in the Ministry of the Interior system; ensure the observance of equal principles in covering patient charges and co-payments and rehabilitation services; and improve the system for the assessment of the officials’ health and physical qualification, ensuring that the physical qualification, health and psychological characteristics of the officers in service meet the specified requirements.
The audit was conducted with respect to the period from 1 January 2010 to 30 June 2011.