NMA wants govt. to wade into NHIS crisis

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The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has called on the Federal Government to urgently resolve the lingering crisis rocking the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).

Dr Ekpe Philip, the FCT Chairman of NMA, made the appeal in Abuja on Wednesday, during a road walk to mark the physician week with the theme “Universal Health Coverage”.

Physician week is a week set aside to celebrate doctors and also to access healthcare delivery in the country.

Philip said that the federal government should adopt pragmatic effort at ending the problem.

According to him, the position of NMA is to prevail on the federal government to resolve the crisis because it is affecting a lot of things in the health sector.

“The Health Management Organisations will not be able to function properly, the hospitals will be scared too, so for this reason, it is an emergency that the federal government should solve the crisis as quickly as possible,’’ Philip said.

He also called on the federal government to assess the healthcare delivery of FCT and Nigerians in general and look at challenges and solution.

Philip said that Nigerians were entitled to quality healthcare services through the NHIS.

He said that Nigeria had covered less than seven per cent compared to other countries like Ghana in healthcare delivery.

The chairman called on the government to activate the informal sector and should not be limited to formal sector.

According to him, the association had written to the Minister of Health on their advocacy so that capturing of the informal sector should start from the FCT being the nation’s capital.

“Our citizens who are not working with government should have basic essential healthcare delivery,’’ Philip said.

Besides, he called on the government to take proactive action in providing job for doctors so that they would not leave the country.

The chairman also urged government to improve the working conditions of medical doctors in the areas of remuneration and facilities in the hospitals.

Dr Nassamu Oluwatoyin, the Public Relations Officer, NMA, FCT chapter, said universal health coverage would bring healthcare delivery to FCT residents with less stress.

He said that Nigerians would be able to access healthcare delivery no matter how rich or poor they were.