Prime News Ghana

GMA calls on gov't to immediately pay NHIS arrears to health facilities

By Mutala Yakubu

The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has called on the government to immediately pay National Health Insurance arrears owed various health facilities across the country.

GMA says the issue of delayed payment of claims needs to be addressed with immediate effect to avert the possibility of reverting to the ‘cash and carry’ system.

Last week, the Health Insurance Service Providers Association of Ghana (HISPAG) threatened to withdraw some of its services from March 2020 if arrears owed its members by the government through the National Health Insurance Scheme are not paid.

According to HISPAG, no payment has been made for NHIS claims for up to fourteen months – a situation that has made it difficult for them to run their facilities, pay employees and settle statutory commitments.

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In a statement signed by the President of GMA, Dr. Frank Ankobea, the Association appealed to government and the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) to urgently look into the matter by making funds available to the health facilities to sustain them and improve the general well-being and health care seeking behaviour of Ghanaians.

“The Ghana Medical Association has noted with great concern the failure of the NHIA to pay health facilities (Public and Private Hospitals) for services rendered from or about March 2019 to date, resulting in some providers threatening to withdraw services to national health insurance cardholders.”

“GMA calls on government and the NHIA to as matter of urgency pay all monies owed these facilities with immediate effect to ensure that they are not forced to initiate cash and carry as a mode of payment in their quest to ensure continuous service delivery as well as forestall their collapse and also for health insurance policyholders get all the health services and benefits of the policy,” the statement added

In the past, HISPAG had threatened to return to the cash and carry system if arrears owed its members by the NHIA are not paid immediately because their operations were being adversely affected.

The Association, therefore, called on the government to take action to have the situation fixed as soon as possible, to prevent any future inconveniences.