The management of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) is rejecting suggestions and opinions it will need the support of churches to enable the scheme work effectively following reports it is cash-strapped and on the verge to collapse
According to Dr. Samuel Annor, NHIS Chief Executive Officer (CEO), taxing churches to help in sustaining the Scheme is not a very popular option or a very common suggestion.
In an interview monitored by MyNewsGh.com, he said “We want round the country with organized labour, civil society; we spoke to so many people across the country. Probably it was at only one venue that somebody suggested that we tax churches to fund national health insurance,” admitting the service was in distress noting “between 2009 and now, we have just been piling debts”
According to Dr. Samuel Annor, source of finance for the insurance scheme; 2.5 percent of Value Added Tax and 2.5 percent contributions from SSNIT, which amounts to $25 for each person per year, is inadequate
Financial analyst Sydney Casely Hayford suggested that the NHIA start taxing churches as a response to the scheme’s dwindling fortunes.
The government according to the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman Manu is aware that the NHIS is in danger of collapsing and frantic efforts are being taken to get a new source of investment.
“We need some new some source of investment and that is what we are engaging in… I’m working. Not only me but in collaboration with the Finance Ministry, to look at how we can get some new investments to put into health insurance.”
Other than that, Mr. Agyemang Manu said the “sustainability of it [NHIS] and what we can do to make it very efficient would become a challenge.”