More than €2.2 million in payment errors made by HSE

Paul Mulholland | 07 Feb 2019 | 0 Comment(s)

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The HSE spent €2.245 million in salary overpayments in 2018, new figures provided to the Medical Independent (MI) can reveal.

The figure is €183,000 greater than the figure spent in 2017, which amounted to €2.062 million.

The amount spent on salary overpayments has increased for the third year running, despite the HSE’s renewed attempts to stop the errors.  The biggest overspend last year was €54,995 related to the “late notification of a death of a pensioner”, according to the HSE.

The largest overspend in 2017 was €171,394, which was an allowance paid in error.

At the end of last year, over 55 per cent of the overpayments identified in 2017 and 2018 had been recovered, a spokesperson for the Executive told MI.

“All HSE areas are obliged by legislation, HSE circulars and by the HSE National Financial Regulations to ensure that all employees and pensioners are paid timely and correctly.

“Although every effort is made to avoid such an occurrence, in the event that an employee/pensioner receives an overpayment of salary, it is the HSE policy to recover the outstanding overpayments as expeditiously as possible.”

The HSE has established a pay-related overpayments management group to monitor overpayments on an ongoing basis, including reviewing the reasons for such an event occurring. Any issues identified as potentially systemic are communicated to relevant managers to assist in ensuring that such scenarios do not reoccur.

There are many reasons for overpayments, including: Allowances paid in error; employees continuing to be paid after resignation; overpaid hours; premia payments paid in error; and sick leave-related errors.

The HSE previously informed MI that the main reason for overpayments was due to late notification to central HR/payroll of changes relating to employees’ employment.

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