NHIA receives GH¢11.06bn for its operations

SYLVESTER MENSAH 1Government has released an amount of GH¢1.06 billion into the operational account of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), for the settlement of the current year transfers for 2014 and GH¢119.2million for the settlement of the 2013 arrears.

Mr. Terkper said this in Parliament yesterday, when he was invited to provide answers to an urgent question, and a number of other supplementary questions.

The urgent question stood in the name of Dr. Kwabena Twum-Nuamah (NPP Berekum East), who sought to know from the minister the number of payments the ministry had made out of the Health Insurance Levy (NHIL), into the Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), in accordance with the National Health Insurance Act, 2012 (Act 852) since January 2013.

Explaining the long delays in the payment of arrears, the minister said the delays were as a result of the structure of the National Health Insurance Levy as well as some challenges in the efficient administration and automation of the levy.

He said the government in 2013 estimated that GH¢917 million would be transferred into the fund as current year transfers and added that “based on the NHIL collection by the Ghana Revenue Authority and contributions from SSNIT, a total amount of GH¢830 million was transferred to the fund. During the year, the total amount transferred to NHIA operational account as current year payment was GH¢711.5 million.”

He said an amount of GH¢116.9 was also transferred to the Authority to settle arrears for the 2012 fiscal year.

Mr. Terkper said the total amount of money transferred to the operational account of the NHIA for the 2013 fiscal year was GH¢828.4 million.

In the 2014 budget, he said it was estimated that an amount of GH¢904.8 million would be transferred to the fund and indicated that GH¢1.06 billion was released to the NHIA as its current year transfers and to clear the arrears for 2013.

Mr. Terkper told the House that the government last made releases to the NHIA in January, and expressed the government’s commitment to settle all arrears to enable the scheme to function effectively.

The finance minister also answered questions on tax revenue shortfalls in the 2014 budget, and indicated that a shortfall of tax revenue of GH¢411.6 million was recorded.

“Tax on income and property recorded a figure of GH¢3,948 million as against a target of GH¢4,217 million, equivalent to a shortfall of 6 per cent

“With regards to taxes on domestic goods and services, revenue realised was GH¢2.955.2 million as against a target of GH¢3,090 million equivalent to a shortfall of 4 per cent,” he said

Mr. Terkper said taxes on international trade recorded a figure of GH¢1,729.2 million, indicating a marginal shortfall from the target of GH¢1,737.1 million

By Yaw Kyei

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