General News Mon, 9 Jan 2006

GHS fails to utilise 40 billion cedis

Tamale, Jan 09, GNA - The Ghana Health Service (GHS) failed to utilise a budgetary allocation of 40 billion cedis given to it by the Ghana Health Fund (GHF) last year because it could not identify areas to use the money for.

Although it was envisag ed that the money would be used to provide infrastructure, facilities and other logistics, the GHS failed to make any request.

Mr John Kweku Pratt, a member of the National Health Insurance Council (NHIC), said this at a meeting with district implementers and board members of the NHIS and District Health Directors in the Northern Region in Tamale on Monday. The members of the National Health Insurance Council are in the region to find out the progress, setbacks and problems facing the implementation of the NHIS in the districts and to see how best they can address them.

Members of the National Health Insurance Council would pay visits to all the districts. They will also pay similar visits to the Upper East and West Regions.

Mr Pratt said 150 billion cedis had also been allocated this year to the GHS to assist it to provide facilities and logistics and undertake other projects to enhance the quality of health delivery in the country.

He said the NHIS was the biggest social programme being implemented in the country and called on all stakeholders to help make it a success and that as at the end of last year about 199 districts in the country were implementing the scheme.

Dr Elias Sory, the Northern Regional Director of Health Services, urged the participants to discuss issues on the NHIS dispassionately devoid of politics since the scheme was in the national interest. The participants complained about the lack of motorbikes to facilitate their movement and the provision of other facilities such as computers to enable them keep adequate and correct information.

Source: GNA