List Of Sectors That Benefit From NHIS
National health insurance scheme is a health insurance programme created by the federal government of Nigeria with the aim of improving the health care sector of the country by providing quality and affordable health care services. According to the act 35 of 1999, a civil servant contributes 5% of their basic salary and the government pays the remaining 10%, making 15% as the total contribution made to the National Health Insurance Scheme per employee. The National Health Insurance scheme providers upon delivering services are paid through one of the following; capitation, per diem, fee-for service and case payment. There are several sectors that benefit from the national health insurance scheme under different stakeholders and programmes. Below is a list of the NHIS beneficiaries:
- Formal sector
- Rural community
- Urban self employed
- Tertiary institutions
- Voluntary participants
- Children under-five
- Armed forces, police and other uniformed service men
- Prison inmates
- Permanently disabled persons
- Diaspora family and friends
The NHIS obtains its funds from different players in the society such as employers of labour, workers, contribution from the government and from other potential beneficiaries. These funds are set aside when the contributors are healthy but later used if they fall sick. The Nigerian health insurance scheme is made possible by the role of different stakeholders who ensure that this programmes works. The stakeholders include: the regulator (which is the NHIS), the health care fund managers (HMOs), the health care providers – including the hospitals, clinics and other ancillary services to medicine and lastly the secondary care providers which include the doctors, pharmacists, dentists, radiologists, surgeons, physicians, physiotherapists, laboratory doctors among others.
However, even with all the beneficiaries from the NHIS, the health care development in Nigeria is still slow and only a small number of the vast Nigerian population has registered with the scheme. The National health insurance scheme faces several challenges that have derailed its spread in the country. Poor funding of the programme has also led to low health quality services being provided; health facilities are in bad shape, poorly equipped and dysfunctional in some areas. Other shortcomings the NHIS faces include: mismanagement of funds and lack of accountability, political differences and power tussle among the key leaders of the scheme, lack of financial planning and dedication by the government to the scheme, unnecessary bureaucracy, administrative bottlenecks and the inability of the government to involve people in its projects.
The NHIS has played a big role by involving many sectors of the economy in this programme. What should the government do to ensure that all its citizens are under the scheme? The government has a duty to educate its citizens on the importance of the scheme so that more people can associate with it. Also, the stakeholders should be harmonized and the citizenry should embrace the political and social will to drive the National health insurance scheme to work on a national level. Through this strategy, the scheme will realize its vision of providing quality and affordable health care countrywide.