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Medical Research Agency. NIK report: over PLN 888 million for the Medical Research Agency. Little benefit to patients

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From year to year, the Medical Research Agency, operating since 2019, received more and more money, but until the end of June 2022, its activities did not bring measurable benefits to either the health care system or the state budget, the Supreme Audit Office indicated after the audit at ABM.

The audit covered the years 2019-2022. “Although the National Health Fund, whose revenues are more than 90 percent of health premiums, transferred over PLN 888 million to ABM, the benefit from its activities for patients was small. What’s more, in the years 2023-2025 National health Fund plans to transfer PLN 1.3 billion to the Agency, despite the fact that ABM did not assess the financial benefits that the research supported by it brings to the state budget and the health care system every year. It is legally obliged to do so,” the spokesman wrote NIK Lukasz Pawelski.

NIK noted that ABM started its operations on March 22, 2019, and already 10 months later the Prime Minister decided to grant this institution the status of a unit of special importance for the state.

THE WHOLE REPORT OF THE SUPREME AUDIT CHAMBER

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“This happened despite the fact that at that time no significant results of its activities were found. Also, the conditions of the Chimney Act, which should be taken into account in this case – the type of services provided by ABM, the scope of operation, turnover and the number of employees have not been met ” – indicated.

It was reported that the audit carried out by the Supreme Audit Office showed that in 2019 the Agency had not yet conducted any research, was only in the process of creating an internal organizational structure, had only 14 full-time positions, and the Ministry of Health provided it with PLN 7 million in subsidies only to cover current operating costs .

“Meanwhile, as a result of entering the Agency on the list of entities of particular importance to the state, the monthly gross remuneration of its president (also the person acting as president) increased in 2020 by over 58 percent, and in 2022 by almost 96 percent – to 47 percent. thousand zlotys gross” – added.

Supreme Chamber of Control TVN24

NIK: the procedure for the position of the president of ABM was unreliable

NIK also believes that the competition procedure for the position of the president of ABM, which is Radosław Sierpiński, conducted by the then Minister of Health, was unreliable.

“The statutory requirements that candidates had to meet concerned, among others, at least five years of professional experience, including three years in human resources management. The information obtained by the Chamber’s auditors shows that the employers listed in the document presented by Radosław Sierpiński did not submit ZUS reports that would show that they paid compulsory contributions for it. In turn, in the Central Register and Information about business there was no data that would indicate that Radosław Sierpiński conducted such activities, which could confirm his experience in a managerial position.

Medical Research AgencyTVN24

“The candidates for the position of the Agency’s president were also required to have appropriate education, to obtain at least the degree of habilitated doctor of medical sciences. Radosław Sierpiński obtained his habilitation in April 2021 at the Medical University of Wrocław, 11 days before the announcement of the competition for the president of ABM” – it was stated.

NIK’s reservations also refer to the fact that ABM did not initiate and conduct its own research and development work in the period covered by the audit, despite the funds provided for this purpose. NIK auditors believe that the Agency’s activities from the beginning of its existence focused primarily on organizing competitions, selecting research projects and financing them. However, it was unable to reduce the risk of funding the same or very similar research.

Main photo source: TVN24



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