By Asmau Ahmad
The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), has reiterated the resolve of the authority to ensure that those in rural communities are captured in the scheme.
North Central Zonal Coordinator of NHIA, Alhaji Adamu Abdullahi, told newsmen in Ilorin, Kwara state that the NHIA has been undertaking reforms to reposition the authority to adequately respond to the challenge of attaining Universal Health Coverage (UCH) in Nigeria by the year 2030.
He stated that the authority has been sensitising the public to embrace the new Groups, Individuals and Family Social Health Insurance Programme (GIFSHIP) policy scheme, which has made provision for every Nigerian to have health insurance.
He recalled that former President Muhammadu Buhari signed the NHIA Bill into law on May 19, 2022, which repealed the NHIS Act and made health insurance mandatory for all Nigerians.
The zonal coordinator explained that the authority is developing digital system that will make billing and settlement very seamless.
He said the acceleration of programmes, implementation of NHIA Act and effective collaboration with all stakeholders will bring about the realisation of universal health coverage in the country by the year 2030.
“NHIA has been undertaking reforms to reposition the authority to adequately respond to the challenge of attaining Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in Nigeria by the year 2030,” he said.
Abdullahi listed some of the reforms to include value system re-orientation, promoting transparency and accountability.
He assured that the authority would accelerate the drive towards achieving UHC through consolidation of existing programmes and innovation.
“Implementation of the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) in line with the National Health Act 2014, to take care of pregnant women, children under five and the elderly through the NHIA gateway,” he said.
Alhaji Yahaya Ahmed, the Kwara Coordinator of NHIA, explained that the new Act has empowered the authority to better regulate the service providers, the health facilities, Health Maintenance Organisation (HMOs) and further protect the interest of enrolees in the insurance scheme.
Ahmed, who was represented by Dr Saka Ismail, the Acting General Manager of NHIA in Kwara, noted that there are more innovations in the authority to cooperate with pharmaceutical industry to help those with illnesses not captured in the scheme.
On drug quality, he explained that the authority only allowed generic medicines, and does not add brands, adding that NAFDAC has the mandate to check for the efficacy of drugs.