The Country Director of PharmAccess Foundation, Dr Maxwell Akwasi Antwi, called for an enhanced collaboration between private and public sector practitioners in the health sector to deepen Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in the country.
He noted that even though the public sector had a lot of mileage in health insurance policies, its growth could be complimented by efforts from the private sector as well.
Dr Antwi who spoke to the Ghanaian Times on the sidelines of a stakeholder seminar on Monday, said there were lessons from both sectors that could help advance Universal Health Coverage, as such there was the need for both parties to build bridges in the areas of regulation, advocacy, and other relevant aspects.
The event was under the theme, “Achieving Universal Health Coverage – Role and contribution of private sector health insurance”.
It was organised by the Nationwide Medical Insurance, in collaboration with the PharmAccess Group.
In attendance were stakeholders in the health industry who shared their views on how to make Universal Health Coverage more successful and sustainable.
Dr Antwi said the word was collaboration and by that stronger ties could be forged between both sectors.
“The public sector is doing great work with the National Health Insurance Authority; having 52 per cent of the population of Ghana as active members. So it really tells you how big that momentum is and how we’re growing very well and the great work that the Ministry of Health and the NHIA and all the partners have worked into,” Dr Antwi said.
Furthermore, he said the PharmAccess group was one of such committed private outfits, poised to partner the government to advance the cause of Universal Health Coverage.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Nationwide Medical Insurance, Nancy Naa Ampah, also stressed the need for private and public sector players to pool their strengths to boost healthcare delivery.
“The private health insurance could be the oil to achieve Universal Health Coverage by 2030, and also we need to be more innovative. The private insurance sector should be very innovative in its approach to healthcare financing”, she added.
In a panel discussion which formed part of the event, notable industry players took turns to express their views on how healthcare in general can be taken to the next level.
Other discussants included the Industry Lead for PHIAG, Ronald Oppong; Operations Manager for PharmAccess Foundation, Dr Gifty Sunkwa-Mills; Board Member of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Dr Isaac Morrison; Senior Vice President (Africa) of Zipline Africa, Daniel Margo, and CEO of Claron Health International, Dr Dennis Addo.
The session was moderated by the Acting Director of Corporate Affairs of the NHIA, Oswald Essuah-Mensah, with a focus on the theme for the event. The participants diagnosed some problems in the industry and advanced some solutions to mitigate the highlighted challenges.
BY CLIFF EKUFUL