Barbadians who have submitted claims to the National Insurance office can expect a return to normal service delivery by month-end.
Acting Director of the National Insurance Office, Jennifer Hunte gave this assurance today following reports that there has been a delay in the processing of claims submitted to that office.
Hunte told Barbadians that the National Insurance Office is currently working on resolving a technical issue which has resulted in a backlog in the processing of benefit claims. The acting director pointed out that a technical team was addressing the matter which has been occurring intermittently since September 2013, but which affected a large number of claims submitted after November 2013. Hunte acknowledged that these challenges have resulted in some delays in the delivery of service to customers.
“The issue has affected all benefits types, but mainly short-term claims. As expected, there has been heightened concern surrounding the categories of sickness and unemployment benefits. These represent 65 and 20 per cent respectively of the short term claims processed by the national
Insurance Office,” Hunte said. Hunte explained that the office was experiencing challenges with its electronic claims creation process. She further explained that as a result, the claims processing staff have not been able to see the scanned images on a consistent basis.
Hunte assured members of the public that every effort was being made to address the matter.
She added that “until the technical team was able to provide a solution, the physical claim forms were being made available to staff and were being used to ensure that all benefits continued to be processed”.
The National Insurance Office processes on average 52,000 sickness and 16,000 unemployment claims annually.
The acting director apologized for the inconvenience caused and thanked Barbadians for their patience as they worked diligently to have the matter resolved. (NC)