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General News of Saturday, 16 February 2019

Source: dailyguidenetwork.com

NHIA boss bows out

The Chief Executive of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Dr. Samuel Annor has reportedly left office after 2 years of service to the Authority.

Although the reason for his resignation is yet to be known, DGN online checks suggests it was due to his age.

Last month Dr. Annor’s name was listed among some eight Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) heading some government institutions who were purported to have been ordered to go on retirement by March 2019.

DGN online’s sources say the eight CEOs have long passed the mandatory retirement age of 60 hence the directive for them to hand over to their deputies in the meantime.

The Public Service Act mandates public officers to retire from public service after attaining the age of 60.

The Act, however, allows for an extension of about five years if the President so wishes.

The seven others include the CEO of the Forestry Commission, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, 65 years, Eugene Ofosuhene, 67 years – Controller and Accountant General, Kofi Jumah, 68 years – CEO of Ghana Industrial Holding Corporation (GIHOC), Isaac Osei, 67 years – CEO of Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), Kwame Owusu, 67 years – CEO of Ghana Maritime Authority, Anthony Nsiah-Asare, 65 years – Director General of the Ghana Health Service, K. K Sarpong, 65 years – CEO of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC).

Dr. Annor, appointed by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, assumed office in March, 2017 at a time the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Ghana’s major social intervention programme was at the verge of collapse due to debts owed to Providers of healthcare services by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration.

He leaves behind a scheme with over 10 million active members and 4,340 NHIS credentialed facilities across the regions of Ghana.

His administration was very instrumental in the clearing of the huge backlog of debts owed providers to the tune of Ghc 1.2 billion and the introduction of the innovative Mobile Renewal Service; a phone based service launched in December, 2018 that allows members and providers conveniently renew and authenticate their membership with the aid of a mobile phone.

Identifying challenges that confronted the scheme after touring all the regions of Ghana and engaging extensively with stakeholders, Dr. Annor’s administration sought to resolve these challenges through a model he termed “Re- structuring of the NHIS on Four (4) Pillars”.

The four (4) pillars centered on: fully implementing an Electronic Claims management system to improve efficiency and reduce fraud, improve compliance in clinical and internal audits to mitigate fraud, amend the NHIS law to make crime against the Scheme more punitive and to act as a deterrent to potential fraudsters and finally re-designing the financing model of the Scheme to make it more sustainable.

The four pillar approach found favour with the government who in turn responded by making changes to the NHIS levy which is anticipated to generate an additional 600 – 800 Million Ghana Cedis annually to shore up the schemes finances.

Until his appointment, Dr. Annor was a consultant obstetrician/gynaecologist and a partner of Lister Hospital – a leading international Private Hospital.

He was also the first Board Chairman of Ghana Airport Company Limited in 2007.