Rath to appeal to Interior Minister after member of team threatened

14-11-2005

The new Health Minister David Rath has said he will turn to the Interior Minister for help after a Health Ministry inspector controlling the administration of the country's largest health insurer, the VZP, received an anonymous threat. An employee in charge of checking the firm's finances received an anonymous call in which a male voice warned her of danger to her person (telling her she'd have to watch herself to make it home). She has not contacted police. The head of the forced administration team, Antonin Pecenka, has also said his team was under external pressure.

Last week the VZP came under forced administration under the new health minister: the health insurer's debt has exceeded more than 12 billion crowns, around 480 million US dollars. Tensions between the company and the Health Ministry have continued to intensify.

The health minister, meanwhile, is reportedly seeking support from among the VZP's administration board against current VZP head Jirina Musilkova. Last week Mr Rath called on Mrs Musilkova to resign, a call she has ignored.