The federal government has unveiled the long awaited operational guidelines for the 2022 National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) Act.
Mohammad Ali Pate, the coordinating minister of health and social welfare announced on Tuesday that the guidelines are now fully on course to ease out-of-pocket health payments through health insurance for all.
“This will reduce financial pain, save lives, produce health, in line with the renewed hope agenda,” Pate said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Stakeholders expect this to regularises prices with current market realities and set reasonable reimbursement rates for medical services.
They also hope that regular monitoring and adjustments can be made to ensure that pricing remains relevant and sustainable over time.
Part of the changes effected by the act is to limit private HMOs to the provision of supplementary services.
They can also act as third-party administrators to facilitate the implementation of state health schemes when contracted or perform functions required by the NHIA.
Only states and the Federal Capital Territory are empowered to provide a basic minimum package of care to cover all residents through their health insurance and contributory scheme.
The Act, subsection 1 and 2 of section 14 has made it mandatory for all residents in Nigeria to obtain health insurance. Employers and employees in the public and private sectors and informal sector employees must obtain insurance.
The NHIA itself is to provide coverage for employees of ministries, departments, and agencies in the Federal Civil Service and Other relevant groups.
A vulnerable group fund has been established to cater to the coverage of indigents.