Paulo Roberto Rebello announced intervention in the health operator, but said that he only learned of the complaints through the CPI of Covid-19
In the testimony of the director-president of the National Supplementary Health Agency (YEARS), Paulo Roberto Rebello, the senators of CPI to Covid-19 pointed out the omission of the autarchy, linked to the Ministry of Health, in the inspection of the Prevent Senior. The server announced, on Wednesday, 6, that the agency will intervene in the health care provider through a Technical Prime Time Zone, and defended itself from criticism saying that it learned of the complaints through the commission. Parliamentarians suspect that the ANS acted to shield the company that entered the collegiate’s crosshairs due to a dossier that accuses the insurer of using “human guinea pigs” for the testing of drugs proven to be ineffective, defrauding death certificates to omit the coronavirus as a cause the death of patients and forcing health professionals to work infected.
In his opening statement, Paulo Rebello said that the ANS “has no authority to suspend research and treatment.” He also added that the agency was surprised by the complaints made by the 12 doctors and former doctors who prepared a dossier against Prevent Senior and that they learned of any irregularities through the CPI. “ANS has been focusing its action on combating the pandemic and was surprised by the complaints against Prevent Senior”, he continued. Later, he stated that “it is not up to the ANS to intervene in relation to the prescription of medications [do kit covid]. This is medical autonomy, it’s up to the CFM [Conselho Federal de Medicina] and to CRM [Conselho Regional de Medicina] inspect. We are not competent to do so. The agency must act when there is any kind of pressure to prescribe this or that medication”. In the assessment of the senators, this is one of the elements that proves that there was an omission by the autarchy, since the 12 doctors and former doctors of Prevent Senior allege, precisely, that they did not have autonomy to work. “One of ANS’ attributions is to oversee the complaint. The agency did not send any staff to the hospital. There was an omission, yes, in this matter”, said senator Otto Alencar (PSD-BA).
The version that the ANS only learned of the accusations when the case came to light in the commission, at the end of the month of August of this year, was widely contested by the senators. Vice president of the CPI, senator Randolfe Rodrigues (Rede-AP) exhibited messages exchanged between a whistleblower and an ANS representative. In the dialogue, dated June 2021, a healthcare professional shares prints of Prevent Senior groups in which company directors insist on the prescription of drugs called “kit-Covid” (see below). “Unfortunately, there was, yes, an imposition by the operator for professionals to prescribe certain medications to patients, restricting medical autonomy”, says the report. In another message, an employee of the health care provider says: “Sneezed, take [cloroquina]”. To the senator, Rebello said that the agency only had access to the complaint on Monday, 4.
“You must have an advisory and you never knew about [das denúncias]? Honestly, it doesn’t convince me that it was only after the CPI that the ANS became aware of this. Newspapers and blogs have denounced Prevent Senior since March, April. This is a question that you will have to explain properly. Did the press already disclose, as you only learned about it from the CPI? The commission made clear the evidence of poor care, of attitudes taken within the hospital”, reacted Alencar. “This conversation of yours that the ANS didn’t know about, let’s put it differently. ANS will only decide to do something for real after [o caso Prevent Senior] came out at the CPI. I was happy to know that the agency is going to put a Technical Director at Prevent, but that only happened because we put that citizen [Pedro Batista Júnior, diretor-executivo da operadora] sitting here”, followed Senator Humberto Costa (PT-PE).
‘Left to its own devices’
The absence of allied senators from the Planalto Palace in the first part of the session caught the attention of the president of the Covid-19 CPI, Omar Aziz (PSD-AM). During much of the hearing, only members of the G7, the majority group of the commission, formed by opposition and independent members, were present in the plenary. “Just to say: there’s no one from the Havan gang here, no. They like Havan people. If you owned the Havan, it was packed. Fakhoury was a little less, but you’re alone,” said Aziz. The PSD congressman referred to Luciano Hang’s testimony, which took place on Wednesday, 29. At the time, government officials made several interventions and came out in defense of the businessman. Pocketnarist deputies, even, followed the session in loco and made short live broadcasts, as was the case of deputy Bia Kicis (PSL-DF). In the session this Wednesday, 6, the first government senator to question the deponent was Luis Carlos Heinze (PP-RS), around 15:00.
About 40 minutes later, senator Marcos Rogério (DEM-RO) asked the deponent if he is the cousin of former senator Lindbergh Farias, from the PT. Faced with the positive response, the DEM congressman stated that the CPI built “narratives”. He referred to the fact that the commission had explored the information that Paulo Rebello was Ricardo Barros (PP-PR) chief of staff at the Ministry of Health, in addition to having been appointed to the ANS by former minister Gilberto Occhi (PP) , from the political group of Barros. The director denied that he was sponsored by the PT, Rogério added that he did not make any accusation against the former parliamentarian because he is not “irresponsible”, but his speech generated a hustle. Randolfe Rodrigues said that the government official “only comes to protect criminals here”. “Stop clowning around, you’ve been clowning for five months. If this is a circus, Your Excellency is the biggest clown”, added the vice president of the collegiate.
Senator Rogério Carvalho (PT-SE) raised the tone and countered Marcos Rogério’s speech. “I could do the same. What do you have to do with your advisor who was arrested for drug trafficking?”, asked the PT member. An assistant to the DEM senator was arrested in a Federal Police operation that targeted a drug trafficking gang – the server was exonerated. In response, the government official said that “I have no tolerance on my part for any criminal practice.”