Ghana has one of the world’s most promising National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) that is striving to provide basic health care needs to its people, a health expert has said.
Dr Yme van der Berg, Coordinator and Principal Facilitator of Universal Health Coverage at the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT), in The Netherlands, who made the assertion has commended Ghana for the level it had reached with its NHIS coverage.
“It took countries like Germany and South Korea more than 25 years to have a well accessible health insurance schemes for its citizens and Ghana has taken much shorter period to reach this level,” Dr van der Berg said.
Dr van der Berg is leading a team of alumni of the KIT in the country for a two-week refresher course being run in partnership with Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration.
The 24-member team made up of health policy experts drawn from Africa, Europe and Asia, has been in the country on a short refresher course on Universal Health Coverage.
The course among other things is considering Ghana’s NHIS as a case study for health financing.
As part of the course, the team on Tuesday called on the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) to interact with the officials and to have a better understanding of how the scheme is being managed.
Dr van der Berg explained that Ghana was selected as a destination to converge for the course because of gains the country had made with its NHIS.
He indicated that Ghana offers a “very promising health financing model in its NHIS and that the country is on course as far as programmes towards Universal Health Coverage are concerned.
He lauded Ghanaians for setting aside a 2.5 per cent National Health Insurance Law to support the Scheme.
Mr Sylvester A. Mensah, Chief Executive Officer of the NHIA, told the team that Ghana is assiduously working towards attaining Universal Health Coverage and that a number of policies and strategies have been developed to ensure that many more people across the country have access to healthcare.
He said: “By the establishment of the NHIS and the commitment it receives from government, Ghana is poised for Universal Health Coverage.”
Mr Francis-Xavier Andoh-Adjei, Deputy Director of Policy Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation at the NHIA and also a facilitator of the course, explained that the Royal Tropical Institute of The Netherlands is one of the foremost schools in the world offering international course in health development and public health.