5000 Aged Gets Free NHIS

NHIS official assisting some elders to register

The Ministry for Gender, Women and Social Protection in collaboration with the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) has enrolled elderly persons above age 70 in Accra on the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).

Beginning with 1000 elders in Akoto Lante and Chorkor communities, the Ministry, on Saturday, extended the exercise to Teshie, Labadi, and Ashaiman.

Gender and Social Protection Minister, Nana Oye Lithur, noted that a total of 5000 adults in the communities were targeted with the intention to register another 5000 aged residents in the Central Region.

Free registration for adults, 70 and above, a provision under NHIS was to address the health needs of the aged who are unable to bear the cost of seeking health care.

The partnership between the Ministry and the NHIA to embark on the exercise formed part of the Ministry’s obligation to safeguard the welfare of the vulnerable in society.

Saturday’s registration witnessed biometric health insurance cards issued instantly to beneficiaries.

The introduction of instant biometric cards by the NHIA, beginning from the Greater Accra Region, was to help eliminate delays that have been associated with securing an insurance card by applicants recently, Kordzo Adonoo, Communications Manager, NHIA, said.

Nana Oye added that efforts at bringing health relief to the elders in society had resulted in partnership with development agencies and the Ghana Health Service (GHS) to support the training of geriatric professionals to attend to the aged in society.

‘The Ministry through collaboration with the United Nations Fund for Population Activities is in the process of drafting a bill for enactment by Parliament to facilitate the establishment of a National Council on Ageing. Subsequently, we have established an ageing desk to address issues related to the elderly,’ she stated.

Sylvester Mensah, Chief Executive Officer, NHIA, stated it was important to integrate the health insurance programme with social intervention policies to enable significant number of citizens to be enrolled.

By Ernest Nutsugah

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