The Ghana Medical Association(GMA) has called on Government to suspend all allocations from the National Health Insurance Authority(NHIA) Funds to ancillary programs including allocation to Members of Parliament.
“Government should suspend using NHIA funds for other purposes,” the association said.
Addressing the media in Koforidua Sunday to round-up its 60th Anniversary and 2018 Annual General Conference, President of GMA, Dr.Frank Ankobea stated that the Association is mindful of the various challenges facing the financing of healthcare in Ghana and their impact on health Service delivery and therefore wants government to take pragmatic measures to ensure that the NHIS does not collapse.
The Association has therefore recommended to government to additionally ensure that “Health Service providers and the NHIA improve gate-keeping roles to prevent double claims, payment for undelivered services and over invoicing”
Also, the GMA wants improvement in the funding models, claims submissions and processing by electronic means, Internal audit system, and punishment for offenders, corrupt staff and providers.
In addition, the GMA has opined “NHIA should take the necessary steps to fix right and realistic tariffs ,urged government to take immediate steps to ensure direct transfers of National Health insurance Levy(NHIL) to NHIL account at Bank of Ghana and abort the current practice of paying the NHIL to the consolidated account”.
GMA has also recommended to government to “explore additional funding sources which include the use of heritage taxes from Natural resources, tourism and taxes on goods and Service to bridge the funding gab in healthcare financing, and finally, “as matter of urgency review its policy of monopolizing the purchase of core drugs by health facilities from Central and Regional Medical stores as this has resulted in acute shortage of some essential medicines in health facilities across the country”.
GMA has meanwhile described as unacceptable government failure to employ newly trained and qualified Medical Doctors and Dentist despite the disproportion in Doctor to patient ratio.
“It is worrying that ,newly qualified medical Dictors /Dentist as well as those who have completed housemanship over several months are currently staying at home unemployed wasting away to the detriment of health care delivery in the country.The GMA takes very serious view of this development and will like to state that the citing of lack of financial clearance as the reason for non-posting of Medical Doctors/Dentist by the Ministry of Health is unacceptable”