The Upper East Regional head of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Sebastian Alangpulinsa says delays in the reimbursement of service providers and the inadequate supply of ribbons papers are threatening the sustainability of the scheme in the region.
According to him, though the scheme is making strides in providing universal health care access to citizens, there was the urgent need for government to address the critical challenges confronting it.
[contextly_sidebar id=”L5hQbKQHdNgPqvtiGjyvbtM5cF085iFU”]Speaking at the NHIS’ 2017 annual review in Bolgatanga, Mr. Alangpulinsa said, the scheme, which has registered 569,629 members, representing 47 percent of the population and has generated GHC2,135,869, is threatened with numerous challenges that need government’s immediate attention.
“There are challenges threatening the sustainability of the scheme, among them are delays in the reimbursement of service providers resulting in the provision of poor quality health services with low premium payments,” he said.
“There are also issues of increasing cost of reimbursement, false claims submitted by some service providers, fraud, corruption and weak human resource capacity. Inadequate supply of ribbon papers, printers and computers leading to long queues and waiting times at our offices in registering new members.”
Mr. Alangpulinsa hinted that the government has proposed other sources of funding that, when implemented, would address the funding gap hindering the Scheme.
“Management of NHIA in collaboration with organized labour has sensitized various stakeholders on the additional sources of funding to the scheme which includes a percentage of oil revenues, tax on cigarettes, alcoholic beverages and sugar tax,” he added.
“We also want a percentage of the communication tax, 1% increment in the National health levy, 1% direct contribution of employees salaries and 2% from employers”
Mr. Alangpulinsa added that the Bolga municipal, Bawku West and Nabdam districts have been piloted for family planning inclusion programmes under the scheme.
He hinted that the newly-created districts will be getting their NHIS offices in due course.
By: Frederick Awuni/citifmonline.com/Ghana