Pursue inclusivity, Fubara charges Health Insurance Scheme Managers

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By Philip Ezuma, Port Harcourt

Rivers Rivers State Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara, has said that the State’s Contributory Health Insurance Scheme will offer households a measure of financial protection against healthcare costs and help resolve inequality in the provision of available services.

The Governor, therefore, charged managers of the scheme to be unbiased while administering the scheme so that the most vulnerable in the society are not deprived from accessing critically needed healthcare services.

Governor Fubara gave the charge when he formally launched the public sector Contributory Health Insurance Protection Programme (CHIPP), which is the State’s health insurance programme, shortly after inaugurating the Comprehensive Primary Health Centre in Ndoni Town in Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area.

The Governor, who became the first to be enrolled on the scheme and followed by his Deputy, Prof Ngozi Odu, said the scheme must foster an inclusive and equitable healthcare access for the people of the State.

According to him, “With what I am seeing here, we didn’t make any mistake in ensuring that the Health Insurance Programme commenced in our State. It is to increase access to healthcare for the people.

“With this, most families that cannot afford expensive healthcare services outside their means, can leverage on this service that has been rolled out.

“But it is proper for me to also add that while we are doing this, we shouldn’t undermine the scheme. The services should be properly utilised and the funds released should be applied prudently to achieve the purpose,” he said.

On her part, the Acting Executive Secretary of the Rivers State Contributory Health Insurance Protection Programme, Dr Vetty Agala, said the scheme will enhance chances of achieving universal access to healthcare services in the State.

Dr Agala explained that with the official flag-off done, her team will embark on a round of enrollment of persons unto the scheme in all 319 political wards in the 23 local government areas of the State.

“Today, we are here to flag-off the enrollment of the scheme. Your Excellency, we want to thank you for graciously permitting and approving that Rivers State Contributory Health Insurance Scheme be implemented.

“Rivers people can now, indeed, access healthcare without having to pay at the point of service. At all of our programmes, women, people living with disability, the aged and children under five years can walk into this centre or where they are registered, show their cards and be attended to free of charge,” she added.

Highpoints of the launch were the registration of the Governor and his Deputy, fingerprinting and capturing of both, and presentation of Insurance Identity Cards to the Number One and Number Two Citizens of the State.