NHIS Set to Take Community-Based Health Insurance to Every State
The Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS),
Dr. 'Femi Thomas has stated that the Scheme is set to launch Community
Based Health Insurance Programme (CBHIP) in at least three Local
Government Areas of each state of the federation before the end of the
He made this disclosure at the official flag off of the Ukana West Ward II
Community Based Health Insurance Scehme, which took place at the Primary
Health Center in Ikot – Ideh in Essien Udim LGA of Akwa Ibom State,
According to the NHIS Boss, ''the Scheme is aware that the country has a
very large informal sector and therefore there is no way we can achieve
the presidential mandate of 30% coverage without tapping into the informal
''The CBHIP is therefore a veritable tool to ensuring wider coverage,
increased ownership and entrenching the culture of health insurance in the
Nigerian public”; he said.
He further stated that the scheme is ready to invest money and other
material resources to develop the Community Based Health Insurance
Programme all over the country.
''To this end, the scheme has mandated all its offices in the states to
develop the programme in at least three LGAs before the end of the year”,
Dr. 'Femi stated.
Thomas used the forum to appeal to the state governors to invest more
resources towards developing and sustaining the culture of health
insurance in their states, rather than the various intervention programmes
in the health sector which may not be sustainable on the long run.
''The scheme”, he said, ''has donated an ambulance to the Ikot-Ideh PHC,
so as to demonstrate the standard that the scheme expects state
governments to maintain in all the PHC Centres where CBHI will be
domiciled in all the states of the federation.
Speaking at the occasion, the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Dr. Godswill
Akpabio, who was represented by the State Commissioner of Health, Dr.
Emem Abasi Bassey, said the commitment of the government to the social
contract which existed between it and the people of the state made the
flag off a reality.
The Governor stated that the launch of the CBSHIP is driven by the strong
desire to ensure that effective and affordable healthcare is accessible to
every person in the state, as it will relief the people of the financial
burden associated with health seeking activities, particularly at the
point of care.
Earlier in her welcome address, the country representative of Management
Sciences for Health (MSH), an arm of USAID, Dr. Zipporah Kpamor said the
organization, which is a key technical partner of the state on healthcare
financing, has facilitated the formation of a Technical Working Group that
will co-ordinate and sustain the implementation of the CBSHIP programme.
She said the organization has revived Village Development Committees in
the 15 villages that make up the Ukana West Ward11, as well as the Ward
Development Committee in the area, for community ownership of the project.
She commended NHIS and the government and people of Akwa Ibom State, for
providing the enabling environment for the success of the flag-off of the
At the occasion were members of the State Executive Council, leadership of
the Local Government, traditional rulers and members of the Top
Management Committee of NHIS.
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