The Christian Health Association of Ghana (CHAG) has sent a distress call to the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) to reimburse its institutions for services rendered to clients under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
Currently, the NHIA owes CHAG institutions more than GH¢100 million, spanning 11 months.
The Executive Director of CHAG, Mr Peter K. Yeboah, said the situation was “adversely affecting our capacity to fulfilling our core mandate for providing health services to our people.”
“We consider this as a humanitarian disaster of massive proportion and a collateral damage to the Ghanaian health system if this situation is allowed to persist.
“For this reason, we are now requesting, respectfully, the NHIA to fulfil its obligation to service providers who are the face of the NHIS, especially for CHAG member institutions that depend significantly on reimbursement made by the NHIS,” Mr Yeboah stated.
According to him, every delay by the NHIS meant loss of livelihood and avoidable deaths.
Mr Yeboah said the indebtedness of the NHIS should be seen as an avoidable social trigger that was weakening the healthcare system, pointing out that it was causing several avoidable deaths and affecting productive lives.
He added that the situation also threatened the very existence of the national health system and all attempts should be made to salvage it.
He, therefore, urged the government to consider the reimbursement of NHIS claims as a national priority in the interest of the people, especially mothers and children.
Mr Yeboah said about 90 per cent of clients visiting CHAG facilities were NHIS card bearers.
He said the CHAG institutions offered services as contained in the Christian doctrine, “and this is why we cherish and value the NHIS as an important conduit for providing some of the basic resources for the poor and needy.”
Mr Yeboah, therefore, explained that turning away card bearers would amount to a betrayal of public trust, “and that is why we are asking the NHIS to act with despatch to consider this as an all-important national crisis situation.”
The Deputy Executive Director of CHAG, Dr James Duah, claimed that alleged fraud cases at the NHIS were due to the delay in reimbursement by the NHIA.
He alleged that because suppliers’ money was locked up with the service providers for long periods, the suppliers sometimes added mark-ups of about 30 per cent.
Source: Graphic online