The Ministry of Health has declared misleading and a complete misrepresentation headline making waves on Ghana web, Starrfmonline and other platforms captioned “It looks like health insurance is not working – Health Minister laments.” and “Health Minister threatens to halt Zipline drone delivery over high cost, misuse.”
According to the rejoinder, on NHIS co-payment (out-of-pocket payment) during the Ghana Health Service Management Meeting on Tuesday, April 18, 2023, in the Ashanti Region, the Health Minister raised some concerns about the rate at which some healthcare providers extort monies from members of the National Health Insurance Scheme.
“According to the Minister, ‘From the end-users’ point of view, it looks like the Health Insurance is not working as a result of the extortions,” it said.
It indicated that, the statement from the Minister was not meant to insinuate that Health Insurance was not working but was an admonition to the Managers of the Ghana Health Service through its providers to end this criminality by every means possible.
“The minister said even though he is a member of the NHIS, he has made the decision to pay for medical services whenever he visited the hospital because he can afford it just to lessen the claims burden on the NHIA,” it noted.
Adding that, the Ministry will continue to remain committed to making quality healthcare delivery accessible across the nation as part of the effort to achieve Universal Health Coverage.
“He used the opportunity to urge Managers of the Ghana Health Service, who constitute about 70% of healthcare provider agencies under the Ministry, to help combat this canker that seeks to make the NHIS unattractive,” it added.
The statement said that at the same ceremony, the Minister expressed the view that the services of Zipline where drones are used to deliver medical commodities to health facilities are worthwhile, hence stakeholders should endeavour to use the services judiciously for the purposes of sustainability.
“The Minister bemoaned the practice where some health facilities just place orders for Zipline services not in times when the service is most needed,” it noted.
Adding that, it would be in the Ministry’s and its agencies best interests to review the guidelines around the zipline operations to ensure an alignment with government policies.
“The Ministry remains committed to the operations of Zipline in the provision of essential healthcare services and will keep exploring all available means to make this sustainable,” the statement reiterated.
Edem Agblevor, ISD