30.09.2004 Health

Minister of health lauds enthusiasm towards NHIS

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Tema, Sept. 30,GNA - Dr Kwaku Afriyie, the Minister of Health, has lauded efforts by the district assemblies, to set up various Health Insurance Schemes, to bring health care to the doorsteps of ordinary Ghanaians.

He said reports indicated that over 60 per cent of the assemblies were at the stage of registration, collection of contributions, while the rest were busily working to satisfy the prerequisite formalities.

Dr Afriyie made these remarks in a speech read on his behalf on Wednesday, at the launch of the Tema Municipal Mutual Health Insurance Scheme (MHIS) in Tema, on the theme: "Accessible quality health care for all".

The Municipality is the second, after the Dangme West District, to launch the Scheme in the Greater-Accra Region.

Dr Afriyie said the legislative instrument on the Scheme would soon be put before Parliament, while details of the benefit package and payment mechanism would be made public.

He expressed optimism that the National Health Insurance Scheme would successfully take off in November.

Mr Samuel Evans Ashong Narh, the Tema Municipal Chief Executive, said, so far 58,851 people in the Municipality, had registered with the Scheme, while 1,005 of them had fully paid their premiums.

He stated that the Municipality had been divided into 65 health insurance communities and codified for easy collection of premiums and processing of claims.

The Municipal Chief Executive expressed regret that in spite of the widespread sensitization exercise initiated on the scheme, public patronage was low.

Mr Ishmael Ashitey, Minister of State, Trade, Industry and the President's Special Initiatives, who inaugurated the Municipal Health Insurance Scheme Board, tasked the members to approach their duties with zeal, commitment and dedication.

Mrs Eunice Quansah, Headmistress of Tema Secondary School, who chaired the function, urged the people to embrace the Scheme whole-heartedly to ensure quality health delivery for all.

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