Financing Healthcare in Ghana under National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), the Subscribers Perspective

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English proverb says that “Health is Wealth”. Your health is the most precious wealth that God has given you. Financing Health Care in Ghana has been a major challenge for the various passed Governments. The implementation of the cash and carry compounded the utilization problem by creating a financing barrier to health care access especially for the poor.The gap between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’ keeps widening. Hence the appropriate way of financing healthcare in Ghana under National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), the subscribers perspective. The objectives was determination of premium if it is based on sound actuarial principles, time taking to meet the expenses from service providers as they fall due, subscribers capacity to pay economic premium and how the health needs of the people are met as motivation for membership renewal. The study was conducted in Atebubu-Amanten district through a survey. Multi stage and simple random was used to select the sample size and data was collected using a questionnaire and interviews. The findings show that the scheme cannot meet it claims from service providers with it total premium collected. The people are poor and hence cannot pay economic premium, 58% earned monthly income between 50 Ghc – 150 Ghc as compared to treatment of healthcare cost of 58.08 Ghc to 182.50 Ghc. NHIS card guarantee unrestricted access for clients to service providers. There is no specialist in any of the health facilities in the area. Equally important finding was that premiums collected locally are not invested. This is a treat to sustainability of the scheme should subsidies from central Government stop coming. Based on the findings of the study the following recommendations were made: Economic premium should be charge to cover cost of healthcare. The Government should empower the people economically to earn enough to pay economic premium. Premiums collected should be invested in other investment portfolios to earn additional fund for claims payment.
A Thesis submitted to the Institute of Distance Learning, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Commonwealth Executive Masters of Business Administration, July, 2011