Health News of Thursday, 24 January 2013

Source: Luv FM

KMA wants NHIS capitation reviewed

The Kumasi Metropolitan Health Directorate is calling for a stakeholders’ forum on the way forward, for capitation under the National Health Insurance Scheme.

Metropolitan Director of Health Dr. Akwasi Yeboah Awudzi says the time has come for a review of capitation introduced a year ago, on pilot basis in the Ashanti Region.

According to him, such a forum will address the grave financial challenges health institutions have been grappling with, since the introduction of capitation.

One year after its piloting began in the Ashanti Region, the capitation scheme under the NHIS still remains a contentious issue.

Operators of many health facilities say the tariffs paid under the scheme remain woefully inadequate leading to poor health service delivery.

Most private health facilities remain out of the scheme and the few ones that are on board, charge fees for services hitherto covered by the NHIS.

Some government facilities have also been forced to run co-payment along with the scheme to avoid going bankrupt.

Another disturbing issue is the failure of the National Health Insurance Authority to reimburse service providers in time.

Metropolitan Director of Health Dr. Akwasi Yeboah Awudzi says the last time facilities in Ashanti received payment was five months ago.

According to him it has not been possible to follow government’s directive to health facilities to rely on internally generated funds because the funds supposed to come from the NHIS are not forthcoming.

Dr Awudzi was speaking at the Annual Performance review of the Kumasi Metropolitan Health Directorate.

He regretted government failed to advance funds to health facilities in the sub metropolitan areas for the whole of last year.