Revamp NHIS To Attain Universal Health Coverage ― Health Minister

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As it stands now, Ghana may never achieve Universal Health Coverage (UHC) if it does not invest and revamp its health system.

Although Ghana has embarked on significant strides to improve the access to healthcare, it still grapples with some major challenges.

According to the Minister of Health, Mr Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, key among these challenges is making the National Health Insurance Scheme accessible to every Ghanaian.

Delivering a keynote address at commemoration of the World Health Day in Accra, on Wednesday, the minister noted that the way forward for proper health services in Ghana is to investment in the NHIS, noting tax-based funding as a key source of funds.

“Although the scheme is designed to cater for the very poor core of society, it has difficulties in determining the socio-economic status of its applicants,”

Mr Agyemang-Manu said in order to bridge the gap and to ensure that those who direly need healthcare gets it, the MOH has adopted strategies by hiring consultants to handpick people that should be placed on the indigene’s list.

But even with this generous step, the minister said, “We still find very abled bodied working class young men who are sitting on the indigene’s list. So, there is a challenge as to how we can identify people that healthcare should reach.”

The earlier, the better, Ghana must find its way round the challenges and join the rest the world in attaining Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Three—which is to ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages by 2030.

Ghana soon to attain UHC

The minister said achieving UHC would help Ghana thrive towards better health and development outcomes adding that Ghana is close to achieving that goal.

“These we believe would go a long way to reduce the burden of diseases on the Ghanaian population thereby strengthening the labour force and increase in productivity.

“We are getting closer to partially achieving UHC and we are doing some tabulations and computations, we may soon announce it,” he said.

According to him, other interventions like the CHPS compound has further helped in ensuring that healthcare reach the grassroots.

Mr Agyeman-Manu added that plans are in place to equip all CHPS compounds across the country with the necessary equipment to ensure access to basic health care.

“At the very low end of healthcare delivery, that is where we have the CHP compounds and virtually everything there seems to be close to becoming something that everybody can access with time.

This year’s world health day aims at shinning a spot light on the need for Universal health coverage and the advantages it can bring.

By: Grace Ablewor Sogbey/ ksogbey@gmail.com

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