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Health News of Sunday, 15 July 2018

Source: citinewsroom.com

Don’t cry for funds; engage private sector – Casely Hayford to NHIA

Social commentator, Sydney Casely Hayford views the National Health Insurance Authority’s (NHIA) call for an increment in its funding allocation as unnecessary.

The NHIA CEO, Dr. Samuel Annor, had earlier complained that the Scheme’s source of finance; 2.5% of Value Added Tax and 2.5% contributions from SSNIT, which amounts to $25 for each person per year, is woefully inadequate.

“For what we are using now, the 2.5% VAT and the 2.5% SSNIT is grossly inadequate. It works out just about $25 per person for a whole year. We need as a nation to move it to about $100 per person per year. That is what we are working towards,” he complained

Casely Hayford on Citi FM‘s News Analysis Programme, The Big Issue, however, said the NHIA, rather than demanding an increment, could actively engage the private sector in order to generate more revenue.

“The NHIA should be reducing their demand because they can find different ways of taking away the responsibility of paying for all those services and getting private sector engaged so the private sector will make that money.”

NHIA slammed for quoting figures in dollars

Mr. Casely Hayford also took on the NHIA for using foreign currency in its assessments of citizen contributions to the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).

In a direct response to the NHIA CEO, Sydney Casely Hayford said: “what is he talking about dollars for? Who is paying for National Health in dollars?”

“I have a fundamental objection to when government institutions do this. Nobody is paying you in dollars. Besides, using dollars as a currency in Ghana is illegal. The man should be arrested for trying to impose such a thing,” he added, questioning why the scheme needed four times more money.

The Authority has in the past few months reiterated the need for its funding allocation to be increased to ensure the scheme’s sustainability.

Recently, it made a proposal to the government to increase the 2.5% NHIS levy collected under the Value Added Tax (VAT) to 3.5%.