The Malta Independent 15 November 2018, Thursday

Government paid Vitals Global Healthcare almost €50 million in two years

Julian Bonnici Monday, 15 January 2018, 19:53 Last update: about 11 months ago

The government gave Vitals Global Healthcare €49.5 million since the start of 2016, Health Minister Chris Fearne told Parliament this evening.

Fearne, who was replying to a parliamentary question by PN MP Frederick Azzopardi, revealed that VGH was given €16 million in 2016, and €33.5 million in 2017.

Responding to another question put forward by Azzopardi, Fearne also said that 44 patients have used to air ambulance to be transferred from Gozo to the Malta.

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VGH, which was entrusted with the provision of healthcare services through the Gozo, Karin Grech and St Lukes hospitals, is in the process of selling its 30-year concession just 21 months into operations.

Sources within the healthcare industry have told The Malta Independent that VGH sold its 30-year concession for the three state hospitals and Barts Medical School after experiencing significant financial difficulty, despite of repeated assurances from the owners that funds would be injected into the company. 

The newsroom has also been informed that while an agreement of sale is in place, financial negotiations are still on-going. 

Reliable sources have also said that Minister Konrad Mizzi, who was the health minister until he was stripped of this remit when he was exposed to have an offshore account in Panama; and is the current Minister for public private partnerships, was aware that VGH was in dire financial straits and consequently unable to meet its construction deadlines for almost a full year.

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