Thu, 25 Apr 2013 Feature Article

National Health Insurance And Second Class Citizenship Status

National Health Insurance And Second Class Citizenship Status

The quashing of the pay-before-service-is-delivered at medical facilities dubbed “Cash and carry” was a sigh of relief for many a Ghanaian who struggle to make ends meet.

It has lifted a huge stress of the thought of being called upon at wee hours to cough out money at the point of death before medical services are delivered.

Many citizens have embraced this idea, which has healed or is healing the pain in the neck of Ghanaians. Each year sees many Ghanaians rush to redeem themselves in order to maintain their status, on the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA). Confidence in the scheme has risen to such a crescendo that, now it has assume a house hold name. It also caters for children below the age 18 with new innovations added to the scheme every time.

However, this burden relieving measure which has brought medical services to the door step of many citizens whose daily battle is with poverty are in danger of losing support it has been enjoying since its inception. The blame wholly rest with some unpatriotic citizens, most especially within the medical personnel and professionals.

It will amaze you how a social intervention instituted by a nation could be treated with such disdain. Patients who visit various hospitals with the NHIS cards are most often than not held for long hours at the Out Patients' Department (OPD).

While these NHIS card bearers wait patiently, those unpatriotic citizens who are not hocked on to the scheme are led to consulting rooms. These come with fiscal cash to sway the swift flow of the queues at OPDs in their favour. Guess who leads them to the Doctors, Nurses who think along the same breath as they do. This is the true statement of birds of the same feathers flock together.

As a nation some citizens have worked for their parochial interest often than the projection of the country. It is time we put a stop to these tendencies in order to draw Ghana out of the doldrums of poverty and backwardness. We can also achieve the feat that other nations have, if there is the resolve of country men and women to rescind this attitude exhibited toward national initiatives.

Again, as Ghanaians we are to put our shoulders to this worthy wheel to propel this great national measure to success. The possible collapse will depict the failure of the Authority as well as Ghanaians in general. It will as well bring untold hardship to many households.

Many national projects of great benefits to lots of Ghanaians who are below the red line of poverty have been stampeded in the same manner. As to what the gains have being only the citizens who indulge in this unnationalistic behaviours can communicate it better.

In a similar feature an idea was espoused on where normally the problem might be. If the leadership lacks the initiative then the people will be led by visionless leaders.

Where the people have the edge, but are without the requisite leaders who will lead the way, that society suffers. In this case the leadership has the initiative; while the people rather lack the national spirit to recognise a well thought after measure which services their own good. Ghanaians are also a people who deserve good programmes that will insulate them from unnecessary social pressures.

The time is here for Ghanaians to also work to attain a threshold to be used as hallmark around the world. The health insurance policy is a brilliant idea that requires every citizen to put the shoulder to the wheel to ensure the country succeeds in this pursuit.

Ghana has had wonderful ideas in time past, but unpatriotic behaviour of citizens has always brought such initiatives to the ground. Suffice to write that, we are all aware the initiative is credited to the previous administration and being continued by the current.

Let us together work assiduously to maintain this social intervention seeking to make it better as we travel deep into the future with our destiny in our own hands.

The colonial master is no more, now is the time for us to prove what the late Dr. Kwame Nkrumah said, “The African is capable of managing his own affairs” Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) is currently in a state which does not deserve any proper mention, so is Ghana Water which has been transferred from one investor to the other without progress.

Ghana Telecom has equally gone through same ordeal, and is currently in the hands of Vodafone. What can we call our own as a nation and is successful? Let us all see the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) as our challenge.

Every level headed citizen will agree with me that this is a national issue not a political one. For once let's bury politics in order to achieve the needed national cohesion in this direction.

God bless our homeland Ghana and make our nation great and …

Editor's Note:

Patrick Twumasi