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Health Insurance: Erring facilities risk total closure – NHIA  

The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) has said it would wield its powers to close down and prosecute any health facility undermining the insurance scheme.…

The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) has said it would wield its powers to close down and prosecute any health facility undermining the insurance scheme.

This is just as the authority restated that not less than 83 million vulnerable Nigerians would have easy access to health care freely.

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The NHIA had replaced the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) following an act signed in May 2022 by President Muhammadu Buhari, thereby repealing the 2004 Act of the NHIS.

Speaking on Tuesday in Abeokuta, Ogun State, during a one-day sensitization workshop for stakeholders, the Acting State Coordinator of NHIA, Bode Adeleke, explained that the body now has more power and coverage including the authority to sanction and prosecute erring health facilities or stakeholders.

Adeleke also explained that the authority had battled the problems with the perception of fake drugs in the recent past hence the resolve to sanction or prosecute any facility found culpable.

“With the new Act, we have more regulatory powers; any erring hospitals can now be closed down, even pharmaceuticals or standalone providers like Opticians or Ophthalmologists.

“We can regulate them now; close them partially or totally. But before now, we couldn’t do that because we didn’t have the regulatory power,” the acting coordinator said.

According to him, the new Act presents an opportunity to enroll virtually everybody in the country, especially the vulnerable in the society.

In his presentation, the Director of Health, Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta (FUNAAB), Dr Abiodun Amusan, said the authority should as a matter of urgency reach out to stakeholders to key into the scheme.

“Some of them have refused to enroll for the health insurance scheme. Some hide under their spouses to enjoy the scheme without paying a dime from their salaries. There’s a need to do something about it,” he said.

Also, the Coordinator, Police Health Maintenance Ltd, Mba Okechuwu, maintained that “it is very important to sensitise the general public on the issue of drug branding by the NHIA”, adding that, “it would enable them to be aware of drugs produced by NHIA and it’s competency.”