NHIS cards to be renewed electronically

Dr Annor speaking to the media

Dr Annor speaking to the media

Ghanaians will be able to renew their National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) cards on their mobile phones following an electronic renewal system to be launched in December, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the scheme, Dr Samuel Annor, has announced.

The e-renewal system forms part of efforts by the NHIS to prevent people queuing for hours to have their cards renewed.

According to Dr Annor who visited some registration centres in Accra on Wednesday to observe activities with regards to renewal of cards and registration of new members, the e-renewal system would go a long way to save Ghanaians the stress they go through to get accessible health care.

“The delay at the district offices, with people waiting, sometimes between eight to 10 hours to renew their cards is very disturbing so we opted for technology to solve the problem,” he stated.

He added that, the NHIS would turn 15 years in December, and would use the opportunity to officially launch the e-renewal project which would begin in January 2019.

He said, the project being piloted in two districts, Asogyaman and West Mamprusi, had been very successful.

“By dialing *842#, one would be able to renew their membership and access other services on the NHIS and make all payments via mobile money,” he explained.

Prior to the nation-wide roll-out of the project, he said the NHIS had provided all the materials needed for the smooth registration and renewal of cards across the country.

“We assure members across the country that, all that is needed logistically to renew the cards have been provided as we look forward to the e-renewal system,” he stressed.

Aside the project, he said they were worried about complaints that patients were made to pay for services despite holding the NHIS cards, and would ensure that the process was streamlined to avoid unexpected payments.

“Going forward, we would ensure that, patients who attend primary health centres with the insurance card are not charged anything,” he stated.

In the case where they would have to attend secondary health facilities like the regional hospitals such as Ridge and the Korle Bu hospitals, he said, it must be based on referrals and government would pay service providers accordingly.

Dr Annor added that, they have settled most of the arrears owed service providers across the country and would ensure that, the scheme does not owe, from next year.

BY MICHAEL D. ABAYATEYE

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