A group calling itself the Concerned Citizens Association Ghana believes healthcare financing in Ghana could revert to ‘cash and carry’ if the National Democratic Congress (NDC) presidential hopeful, John Dramani Mahama wins the upcoming election on December 7, 2020.
The group alleged that John Mahama is skimming to disenfranchise the extremely poor and vulnerable who are benefitting from the existing National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
In a statement, the group said, the NDC is likely to reintroduce cash and carry at the secondary and tertiary levels with its promise to provide free healthcare to Ghanaians with or without NHIS ID cards.
“How is he (John Mahama) going to handle referrals of those without NHIS ID cards? How is the NHIS going to provide continuity of the Healthcare of such patients without NHIS ID cards at the secondary and tertiary levels of care?”
The Concerned Citizens Association Ghana also indicated the former President’s outburst means he is either unaware of the modus operandi of the NHIS or deliberately seeking to poorly regulate the scheme which will eventually worsen access to care for the poor.”
“If ex-President Mahama says we should trust him and NDC with free Primary Healthcare, then remember the failed promise of one time premium on NHIS,” the group added.
In a related development, son of Ghana’s first President, Sekou Nkrumah has criticized Mr. Mahama over his free primary healthcare promise.
“John Mahama could not run the National Health Insurance Scheme and today he is talking of free primary health care? Does he think Ghanaians are fools? Sekou quizzed.”
The former President says the next NDC government will implement free primary health care for all Ghanaians under a special arrangement to be managed by the National Health Insurance Authority.
The NDC has described this plan “as the fulcrum” around which its Health Policy will revolve should it win power in the 2020 elections.
It expects to have the policy up and running before the end of 2021 to cover persons who seek healthcare services at the district level and lower .
Alex Segbefia, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Deputy Campaign Manager, has put the cost of his party's Free Primary Health Care promise at $18 million.