The average Middle class in Nigeria is just one major illness from penury. Right now, GOFUNDME campaigns on social media to fund healthcare emergencies aren’t just for those on the bottom of the ladder.
The average motivational speaker would tell you to save first, then invest before you spend, my advice is to pay your health insurance provider first, since health is wealth that’s the best investment, just take it as another form of saving investment, like payment into a pension for your health.
Health insurance is a lifesaver, For the reasons, it helps to prevent late diagnosis of illness, which is putting off that hospital visit while thinking of the cost implications, but with a decent health insurance plan that covers the most basic test, you can get ahead of whatever it is that is trying to hold you down.
Another reason for the late diagnosis is the fear and faith factor, sometimes we end up mistaking one for the other and we try and dismiss one for the other. On my first day of HSE training, I was told that, “God Forbid” wasn’t a safety measure but sadly because of the economic situation in the country, it’s what most people have but there are others who have options but don’t take advantage of them.
Life is more chaotic than orderly and some of us try to decree order through faith, but in a country with a life expectancy of 54 years, that’s clearly not working, we don’t buy Insurance and we don’t write wills, two measures that help to transfer and mitigate tragedy because we believe we are acting in faith.
A health insurance plan for the family and dependents could help cushion that late-night call from a loved one and trip to the hospital. We shouldn’t put ourselves in a situation where our healthcare depends on the kindness of friends, family, and strangers.
I live my life according to the lyrics from the Rappers Lil Wayne and Rick Ross song, “JOHN”. “Prepare for the worst but still pray for the best”. Health insurance is one of the ways of doing so, another line from that song says; “I get money to kill time”.
Response time in an emergency with health insurance or a bag of cash might be the difference between life and death. If you don’t have one then make sure you get the other.
Insurance might have a bad reputation in this country but that hasn’t been my experience from car to health, my insurance companies have always come through for me, insurance companies understand the more satisfied customers they get the better it is for business just like every other service industry. It’s not perfect but just like democracy, capitalism, and the rule of law, it’s a lot better than the other options.
Health insurance in Nigeria provides numerous benefits, including:
Access to quality healthcare: Health insurance provides access to quality healthcare services, including routine check-ups, medical consultations, and treatments.
Financial protection: Health insurance protects individuals and families from the financial burden of unexpected medical expenses, such as hospitalization costs.
Reduced out-of-pocket expenses: Health insurance helps reduce the amount of money that patients have to pay out of their own pockets for medical treatments, tests, and procedures.
Improved health outcomes: With access to quality healthcare services, individuals are more likely to receive timely and effective treatments, leading to improved health outcomes.
Peace of mind: Health insurance provides peace of mind, knowing that one is financially protected in the event of unexpected medical expenses.
Increased access to specialist care: Health insurance provides increased access to specialist care, including access to specialists for the diagnosis and treatment of complex medical conditions.
Improved quality of life: With access to quality healthcare services, individuals can maintain good health and improve their quality of life.
One of the best forms of staff motivation, is health insurance, offering your staff health insurance ensures happy employees and fewer sick days, as the staff has the option to go to the hospital early, they are more productive and can focus more on work, it fosters a healthy company culture by showing you put people first and their health is important to you.
There exist various types of health insurance in Nigeria where the rate of penetration is very low at less than ten percent, types include federal and state civil service, corporate and personal.
“Pain is a condition of life and death the consequence”. So, we are trying to use civilization, culture, laws religion, and science to make sense of all the chaos that life brings, we want to believe that we are more than just sacks of Protoplasm, hanging on to a rock called Earth that is rotating around a ball of fire we call the Sun, one of the ways we try and make some order of the daily chaos is Insurance.
Okojevoh is a certified project manager, scrum master and HSE professional