A total of 535 elderly persons drawn from the Ho municipality thronged the Ola Senior High School to be registered under the free national health insurance scheme (NHIS) for the aged last Saturday.
This was the second time the exercise had been held in the Volta Region after the one held in the Keta Municipality
It was on the theme “Caring for our elderly” jointly organised by the National Health Insurance Authority and the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection.
Beneficiaries also were provided with lunch packages.
The Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Nana Oye Lithur, said the intervention was part of the efforts to enhance the status of the elderly to promote their welfare.
She disclosed that a national advisory committee had been inaugurated to develop a national ageing bill in addition to reviewing the policy implementation action plan with key stakeholders in order to include emerging issues and to reflect the realities of issues facing elderly persons.
Memorandum with Denmark
Nana Oye Lithur announced that Ghana and Denmark had signed a Memorandum of Understanding to provide geriatric care services in Ghana, adding that the agreement covered financial and technical support for geriatric education by incorporating geriatrics into the nursing and medical curriculum in nursing and medical colleges in Ghana.
Visit to cured lepers village
She also visited the Schoooven Cured Lepers Village where she delivered the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) funds to the inmates.
Nana Oye Lithur disclosed that 363 inmates had been identified at the cured lepers village in Ho to be brought on board under LEAP and that the beneficiaries were automatic cardholders of the NHIS.
She said the ministry was preparing to register all prisoners in the country onto the LEAP and NHIS schemes.
The Volta Regional Minister, Ms Helen Adjoa Ntoso, said healthy citizens were the livewire of a every nation and, therefore, rubbished those hardliners who claimed that no development was taking place in the region.
The Member of Parliament (MP) for Ho Central constituency, Mr Benjamin Kpodo, thanked the NHIS for extending the opportunity to the people which he said had generated enthusiasm and recognition to them by the government.
Plight of cured lepers
The Assembly Member for the Schoooven village, Mr Anthony Bruce, said the inmates were fed only once in a day and that LEAP allowance could not help inmates and their children to survive.
He appealed to the government to consider employing children of cured lepers, since some of them were well educated to fit into the job market.
The minister was accompanied by her deputy, Mrs Dela Sowah, who is also the MP for Kpando Constituency.
Source: Daily Graphic Online