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Wed 10 Sep 2008 04:00 AM

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Online billing for Abu Dhabi

Hospitals in Abu Dhabi will start sending their first electronic bills for the payment of hospital care this month, as part of a scheme to make the pay process more effective and cost-efficient, the Health Authority (HAAD)has said.

Hospitals in Abu Dhabi will start sending their first electronic bills for the payment of hospital care this month, as part of a scheme to make the pay process more effective and cost-efficient, the Health Authority (HAAD)has said.

Electronic bills will be the only method hospitals can use to settle bills for inpatient care with insurers, under Abu Dhabi's mandatory insurance scheme, launched in 2007.

In May, HAAD introduced the Thiqa insurance scheme to offer free healthcare to Abu Dhabi nationals.

The billing system will contain patient details and clinical data, which will be used by HAAD to monitor the cost and quality of care, Dr Finn Goldner head of health system financing said. "The first claims for Thiqa are now being generated and Daman is working very hard with the hospitals."

The electronic bills are the first step in a wider programme that will eventually see a new payment system know as Diagnosis Related Groups (DRGs) implemented in the Emirate.

DRGs base the cost of each in-patent stay on a diagnosis and the pre-calculated costs of caring for the average patient in that diagnostic group, Mr Goldner added.

It will replace the fee for treatment scheme which sees insurers and government's paying for every procedure a hospital carries out regardless of its necessity. DRGs are the payment system of choice for 30 developed countries world wide.

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