The Director General of the National Senior Citizens Centre (NSCC), Dr Emem Omokaro, has appealed to state governments to domesticate the National Health Insurance Act to enhance access to healthcare by older persons.
Omokaro made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Abuja.
She said President Muhammadu Buhari had set up a Committee on Health for Older Persons in late 2020 to look at the gaps in access to healthcare by older persons.
“After all was said and done, the president signed into law the National Health Insurance Authority Act. That is the legal framework for universal health where older persons are captured.
“Before now, it used to be children, women and pregnant women, but now older persons are captured. Health is on the concurrent list and only a few states have started rolling out their health insurance.
“However, I am appealing to state governments across the country to domesticate the National Health Insurance Act.
“Once states have domesticated the act and developed the policy, it means that they are going to articulate this initiative, especially they will be able to coordinate it,” she said.
The NSCC boss said before the act was signed into law, there were gaps in the inclusion of older persons in areas of primary healthcare, agriculture, housing, transport and other mandates of government agencies, hence the need for its domestication.(NAN)