The health of every citizen, the government says, is paramount, hence the implementation of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
Indigenes such as the very poor, vulnerable, marginalized and downtrodden, orphans and vulnerable children, the aged/elderly (65 years and above), severely disabled people who cannot work, pregnant women and infants below the age of one are supposed to be registered for free without any difficulty, but that is not the situation in the Gushegu Municipal Assembly where indigents have to hassle and tussle with the able and well-to-do people just to be registered under the scheme.
The NHIS is a social intervention program introduced by government to provide access to quality healthcare for Ghanaian residents . The Gushegu municipal social welfare director, Mr. Iddrisu Ibrahim who spoke to Zaa news, said political interference, dominance of an ethnic group, interference in office work by the natives of the locality are some of the challenges hampering the registration of indigents.
According to him, the whole exercise has taken a political dimension, adding the indicators to be used in identifying the indigents for Livelihoods Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP-FREE) Registration to NHIS have been thrown into the dustbin. He also lamented the dominance of one ethnic group than other groups in most of government interventions, saying as a designated officer, office activities are sometimes being interfered with by the natives of the locality.
Some individuals, he alleged, try to influence officers to engage in wrong doing. He therefore appealed to the government and authorities to come to their aid. He also expressed worry about some people he described as strong individuals trying to intimidate officials to register them leaving the rightful beneficiaries to their fate. He also attributed the challenges to the lack of understanding about the scheme.
To solve the many challenges facing workers, the department wants various stakeholders to help minimize political interference and ensure fair balance in government interventions across the various ethnic groups which he said can be done by doing more sensitization in households monitoring, adding that as an officer, one needs to stand firm in carrying out one’s duty.
They also want communities to be educated and sensitized about the NHIS. They further called for a collaborative effort between community leaders and health officials at the various community CHPS compounds in the municipality and also liaising with other disabled organizations.