Regional News of Sun, 25 Jan 20040
Make NHIS premiums payable for the poor - Akosa
Dzodze (V/R), Jan. 25, GNA - Health institutions have been entreated to evolve innovative systems to make it easier for poor people to pay their premiums in various forms towards the implementation of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Professor Agyeman Badu Akosa, Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), said at the weekend. He was addressing a staff durbar at the Saint Anthony Catholic Hospital at Dzodze in the Ketu District as part of his tour of the Volta Region.
Prof Akosa said a sizeable goat, sheep, fowls or bags of maize or beans could be used to pay the premiums instead of relying on the people to pay in cash.
He explained that a sizeable female goat worth 100,000 cedis for instance could be used as aggregate family wealth to pay premiums, more so when the goat could procreate to increase their numbers for sale. Prof Akosa said such innovativeness would make the country's NHIS unique as the scheme would be affordable and be brought down to the level of the poor in the society adding, "Health is wealth".
He further entreated hospital authorities to establish well-stocked libraries to be patronised by students on admission.
The Director-General said the novelty was to keep them abreast with their studies and not to be left behind as a result of ill health and to ward off boredom.
Prof Akosa promised to liase with the Ghana Book Trust to re-stock already existing libraries, while new ones were being constructed. He urged hospital authorities to use part of their internally generated funds to undertake projects such as painting and fencing.