To ensure the proper execution of his prosperity agenda and in fulfillment of a long nursed desire to make health care readily accessible to one and all, Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa has blazed the trail by signing into law the Delta State Health Insurance Commission (DSHIC) bill, which would ensure easy access to medical health-care by all Deltans.
Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Monday Igbuya, accompanied by his Deputy, Rt. Hon. Friday Osanebi, Clerk of the House, Mrs Lyna Ochulor and other principal officers of the Assembly, had presented the bill as approved by the legislatures in the presence of top government functionaries and executive of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
According to the Governor, good health is very important in achieving his agenda for Deltans and the DSHIC would culminate in the provision of contributory health insurance scheme for all Deltans.
“The world is talking about universal health coverage and I think that we are on the right track in Nigeria and we need greater cooperation among us all; the National Health Insurance Scheme has been there for a long time, they have been doing a lot of work,” he said, adding, “as a state, we are mindful of the fact that there is nothing better than good health and even when there is already a provision in the national health act for a percentage of the money that comes from consolidated revenue to be given to the NHIS to manage the insurance, particularly for the vulnerable, in our bill we have rightfully named it the Delta State Contributory Health Commission and it has established a Delta State Health Contributory Scheme and that means that it is not going to be a question of government alone spending all the money.”
While stating that, “as long as you are a Deltan or live in Delta State you will be free to participate in it as it is contributory based,” Governor Okowa emphasised, “there will be different levels in the scheme which include the organized private sector, the public sector, the informal sector and also the vulnerable.”
“For the organized private sector, to the public and informal sector, we will have different approaches to it, but, Deltans should expect that they are going to make some contributions and government is also going to support with some form of contributions, because, we believe that it is definitely best to plan your health rather than wait for a family member to fall ill and they need to be rushed to the hospital and unfortunately you may fall short on money which may lead to borrowing money from money lenders with high interest rates which may cause some families to lose more money,” he further explained.
He added, “the NHIS has actually come to give some reasonable level of assistance and not just financially, they sent their own personnel to go out with our personnel down to the various hospitals, primary healthcare centers to do an assessment and I thank God, I thank the Delta State House of Assembly for passing this bill into law and the NHIS for their support, we are going to run fast, we know that the times are difficult but, with partnership from Deltans, the scheme will be a success.”
Earlier, Rt. Hon. Igbuya had said that the bill passed through a rigorous process including public hearing before it was passed into law while the Executive Secretary of NHIS, Mr Oluefemi Akingbade commended the Governor Okowa’s administration for blazing the trail in ensuring that Deltans have access to quality and affordable health care.
While calling for enlightenment campaigns for Deltans to buy into the programme, Mr. Akingbade, reiterated that Deltans were in for a prosperous future because, good health have been assured for them