No going back on implementation of Health Insurance Scheme-LASG

Dr. Jide Idris, Lagos State Commissioner for Health

The Lagos State Government says there is no going back on the planned implementation of the Health Insurance Scheme, HIS, in the state this year.

Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris disclosed this in an interview in Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, saying that government would soon begin sensitization of the HIS among the populace, adding that for residents to subscribed to the scheme, they must possess the Lagos State Residents Registration Agency (LASRRA) card.

According to Idris, the HIS is compulsory for all residents of Lagos State in a bid to bring affordable healthcare scheme to the people, especially the less privileged in the society.

The commissioner explained that government had realized that if it was to continue to provide free healthcare in basic areas, it would cost government about N8 billion annually, saying that the HIS would easily addressed this.

“The Health Insurance Scheme will address equity and the poor will benefit,” he said, adding that private health facilities would be drafted into the scheme, but noted that they must meet the stipulated standard set by the government.

The commissioner disclosed that the HIS would only attend to basic health issues, such as maternal healthcare, deliveries, among others.

“Everybody must subscribe to the Health Insurance Scheme. We will have a robust IT system for data collection. The scheme would be rolled out in Lagos in phases. What people will pay at the end of the month is peanut,” he said.

But he said government was still working on the acceptable monthly stipends to be contributed by residents of the state in order to enjoy the HIS.

Idris said the pilot study was carried out in Ikosi-Isheri Local Council Development Area, LCDA, recently and that the result was tremendous.

He said the success of the pilot survey necessitated the need to take the HIS to people of the state so that everyone would benefit.

Idris, however, disclosed that the state government would officially access the $10 million donor to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic in the state.

He said the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding, MOU, to get the $10 million would be done this year.

-Kazeem Ugbodaga