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General News of Thursday, 20 May 2010

Source: GNA

Ghana's Health Insurance Scheme to become a global model

Ho, May 20, GNA - Mr Sylvester Mensah, Chief Executive of the Nation= al Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) on Thursday said Ghana's National Healt= h Insurance Scheme (NHIS) was set to become a global model. Mr Mensah said this when he met the Volta Regional Scheme officers i= n Ho to outline new operational measures being adopted by the NHIA to rid t= he scheme of its deficiencies and make it viable.

He was optimistic that with innovations being adopted into the worki= ngs of the Scheme, the NHIS would develop to gain global appeal. Mr Mensah called on officials of the Scheme to get accustomed to the=

new trends in management, adding; "we have no choice but to comply". He said those who would not be amenable to the new developments and might choose to leave would however not walk away scot-free if they were found to have indulged in corrupt practices. Mr Mensah said cost containment through blocking financial leakages was the thrust of the new approach to managing the Scheme sustainably. He said the one-time premium payment is irreversible and staff shoul= d support and help implement it.

Mr Mensah said previous "careless statements' by officials and staff= of the Scheme about the one-time premium have been "forgiven."

"Such careless statements will no longer be tolerated among official= s and staff of the Scheme", he warned. Scheme Managers would also be held responsible for any uncomplimenta= ry media reports emanating from service providers against their respective schemes, Mr Mensah said. Mr Elliot Nestor Akototse, Volta Regional Manager of the Scheme, sai= d between January 7 to date, seven service providers had been made to refun= d a total of 709,103.27 Ghana cedis to their respective schemes following "clinical and financial as well as management audits." He urged Scheme Managers to commit themselves to measures being adop= ted to salvage the scheme.

The Volta Regional Minister, Mr Joseph Amenowode, urged managers of the Scheme to take their frontline roles seriously because they held the key to its success. He said they had to inspire public confidence in the Scheme by their=

conduct and approach to work and in addressing the concerns of their clients.