NHIS One-Time Premium To Commence

The one-time premium payment policy under the National health Insurance Scheme will commence, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Dr Kwabena Duffour, has stated. He did not give the specific date of the implementation but it is certain that the project would be implemented by the end of 2012. Presenting the 2012 Budget and economic policy of the government to Parliament in Accra, Dr Duffuor said the implementation of the on- time premium payment was part of efforts by the government to accelerate the achievement of the universal health coverage. To further improve financial controls and efficiency, the Finance and Economic Planning Minister said the NHIS would pilot capitation as an alternative provider payment mechanism. Furthermore, he said the review of the NHIS law would result in a major restructuring of the scheme at the district, regional and national levels. The one time premium payment of the NHIS is a manifesto promise made by the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC). The Attorney General has already initiated action to review ACT 650 of 2003 which established the National Health Insurance for consideration by the Cabinet and subsequent amendment by Parliament to give effect to the proposal. Studies conducted by the National Health Insurance Authority have indicated that the one-time premium payment is realisable. According to an official of the NHIA, the rest of the finance requirement was made up of 2.5 per cent National Health Insurance levy, 2.5 per cent SSNIT contributions paid monthly to the NHIA, the government budgetary support and NHIA investment income.