FG to capture informal sector in NHIS
The Federal Government, yesterday, said plans were underway to capture the informal sector in the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, who stated this in an interactive session with journalists in Abuja, explained that the move would help the country achieve universal health coverage.
The NHIS was kick started in 2005, but the informal sector is yet to be covered, but the minister said the scheme would now capture the sector in order to reduce the high mortality rate in the country.
He also renewed government’s commitment to establish about 10,000 primary healthcare centres across the country, adding: “Last year, we focused more on larger projects, like building of large hospitals, but presently, President Muhammadu Buhari wants us to focus on primary health care centres.
“We will be doing that by creating at least one primary healthcare centre in each ward across the country. That is over 10,000 primary health care centres to be revitalised and modernised. These healthcare centres would be equipped with all basic facilities, like electricity, water supply and the people rendering service”
“We are doing this because most of the deaths in the country occurred at the local level and 60 per cent of the disease in the country can be taken care of by the primary health care centers.”
Clarifying the report that the government was planning to import doctors from abroad, the minister said he was misrepresented, insisted: “Recently I was misquoted by a newspaper organisation who reported that I said the country would import doctors from Europe and United States (US).
“What I said was that there is need to improve our health sector and doing this will require us to work with specialists abroad and even possibly bring volunteers who will come and bring their expertise to the country.”
The minister, who decried the state of hospitals in the country, especially state-owned general hospitals, said the federal government would continue to partner stakeholders in the development of the sector.
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