The Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Prof. Mohammed Sambo, at the weekend said that plans are ongoing to developed a framework to extend health insurance; to members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
Speaking at a forum in Abuja, Sambo said that the gesture was to boost the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) adding that the NHIS had been working with the management of the NYSC to implement the scheme.
According to him, enrollment of NYSC members into NHIS is a presidential directive; and we have been working in partnership with the NYSC to ensure that the fund for the coverage is obtained; so that the national insurance scheme can begin to cover youth corps members.
“What I can say is that within the NYSC programme, we have developed a comprehensive framework. We are waiting for the disbursement of the fund to begin to cover them.”
Sambo revealed that the NHIS had been working toward addressing the complaints of health service providers; that Health Maintenance Organisations (HMOs) was owing to them.
He said, however, that some of the complaints sent to the management of the NHIS against healthcare providers and HMOs were without evidence, noting: “when complaints have evidence and can be quantified, then the scientific value can be attached to them.
“There have been lots of complaints; but last year, in spite of COVID-19, we embarked on an aggressive exercise of reconciliation; between the HMOs and also the healthcare providers.
“Before we embarked on the exercise, we said it in the media; that healthcare companies being owed by HMOs should submit their complaints.
“We generated the complaints sent by the healthcare facilities that responded; and set up a mechanism for reconciliation between the HMOs and the providers.
“Through the exercise, we were able to take stock of the total claims; by the healthcare providers and by mutual agreement; N2.3 billion was assumed to be the uncontroverted money being owed by HMOs; and we insisted that the HMOs must pay that money.”
The NHIS boss said that at the end of 2020, “the scheme was able to retrieve N2 billion from the HMOs; to the healthcare providers and by virtue of the agreement; they negotiated between themselves and decided on the time frame to pay the remaining N3 million.”