NHIS sensitises stakeholders on mobile renewal

Dr Samuel Yaw Annor,  CEO,NHIS

Dr Samuel Yaw Annor, CEO,NHIS

Following the successful implementation of the Mobile Membership Renewal and Authentication of the health insurance in two pilot districts, Asuogyaman and West Mamprusi, the National Health Insurance Authority has extended the project to cover the entire country.

A sensitisation workshop was held here at Wa on Saturday attended by heads of departments, heads of labour unions and schools in the region, as well as representatives of community groupings.

Educating the participants on the operations of the system, the Deputy Director for Corporate Affairs at the NHIS, Mr Oswald Essuah Mensah, said the mobile renewal could be done on any phone provided there was a sim card.

“All you need is a mobile phone that has network on it so that you dial *929#, follow the notifications and get your card renewed in the comfort of your home,” Mr Mensah explained

He said in order to reduce long queues at the various centres and increase the number of subscribers, the authority introduced the mobile renewal system  to benefit the subscriber, the provider and the scheme.

“When you dial the numbers,  you are given four options: the first helps you to check the expiry date of your card,  the second options allows you to renew your card,  the third details the benefit package whilst the last option takes you through the list of drugs  covered by the scheme,” he indicated.

Mr. Mensah noted that providers would also be empowered  to authenticate the subscriber’s renewal and allow them to access healthcare,  adding that “you don’t have to go to our office to get the date behind your card cancelled, because providers will now be using phones to check the validity or otherwise of the card.”

He explained that to block leakages in the system, the scheme added a component that would help the client identify with the drugs they were entitled to under the scheme.

“Days after visiting the health centre, you get a text message requesting you to confirm whether or not you have visited a particular facility for such and such a service. This is to help us confirm claims made by the providers,” he hinted.

For his part, a Director at the Membership and Renewals Operations, Mr Ben Kusi stated that the new service came with an extra fee of GH¢1.00 which was to be paid alongside normal renewal fees through mobile money transfer.

He said the scheme was able to undertake 60,000 renewals every year with the old system throughout the country but was expecting increased patronage with the mobile system.

Mr Kusi urged the stakeholders to educate their audience on the new module which would reduce queues at the health insurance offices, reduce transportation cost and waiting time in renewal.

BY LYDIA DARLINGTON FORDJOUR, WA

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