VICE President Paa Kwesi Amissah- Arthur has charged stakeholders in the health sector to propose innovative ways of funding the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to cater for the growing membership on the scheme because “the government’s budget is seriously constraint”.
He said although the government had done creditably in managing the scheme, the cost of managing the 95 per cent of disease conditions, was increasing much faster than the resources available to the NHIS.
Delivering a key note address at a two-day forum on national consultative meeting to review the NHIA themed: “Towards a Sustainable and Accountable NHIS”, the Vice President reiterated the government’s commitment to providing primary healthcare for all Ghanaians with the expansion of the Community-based Health Planning and Services (CHPS) compounds .
He noted that health financing was a global phenomenon, and urged all stakeholders to consider health insurance as a national priority and urged dispassionate discussion of issues aimed at the strengthening of the NHIS.
He observed that the increasing cost of accessing health was the reason for delay in settlement of claims to service providers.
Notwithstanding the challenges confronting the scheme, Mr. Amissah-Arthur charged stakeholders not to renege in their pursuit to provide universal healthcare, particularly to the poor and vulnerable.
The vice-president urged them to address the challenges in implementing a sustainable health insurance scheme and suggested the introduction of features such as insurance design, financing mechanism, insurance containment and compensation to health providers.
Mr. Amissah-Arthur advised Ghanaians to change their eating habit in order to live longer.
Mr. Seth Tekper, the Minister of Finance, said the health of every nation was central to its economic development.
He said the government in 2015, disbursed about GH¢ 30 million to health facilities across the country.
Mr. Tekper said government made significant progress in health infrastructure, especially in rural communities aimed at making health accessible to all Ghanaians.
By Malik Sullemana