All funds of the Delta State Contributory Health Scheme are safe – Dr Ben Nkechika |READ FULL
The Director-General of Delta State Contributory Health Commission (DSCHC) ,Dr Ben Nkechika stated that all funds of that has been accruing to the Commission since its creation are safe, secured and judiciously used for the services as stated in the Law establishing the DSCHC. The Delta Contributory Health Scheme boss said this in a media release to the public. Dr Ben further stated that accounts of the DSCHC are audited by External Auditors yearly and it’s activities are scrutinized closely by representatives of the Labour Unions.
It could be recalled that Delta State Contributory Health Commission (DSCHC) was established in 2016 after going through all parliamentary protocol at a Bipartisan DTHA anDelta State Contributory Health Commission (DSCHC)d signing as Law by the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa.Before its establishment there was an extensive consultation with all stakeholders including the Labour Unions before commencement of the Scheme.
The Delta State Contributory Health Scheme is a mandatory health Insurance Scheme for all residents of Delta State including all workers as stated in the Law and this is the same status for all health Insurance Schemes in Nigeria. The percentage deduction was agreed and signed with all Labour Unions before it’s commencement.
The amount deducted by the commission is not equivalent to cost of treatment. It is equivalent to a deposit towards healthcare services when needed. Enrollees of the Scheme are not all expected to need the healthcare service at the same time. A viable health Insurance Scheme should have an average of 20-30% utilization rate.
The non-utilized Fund according to the Commission’s D.G is reserved in the bank or invested to grow the fund for future use. This is being done by the DSCHC. Dr Ben opined that reserve funds of the Scheme are currently safe and secured in the bank with periodic internal and external audit to ensure accountability.
He stated that “All workers in Delta State including all Political Office holders, were registered into the Scheme from the State Payroll Records”. The workers were all informed through a Circular from the State Government to validate and update their records at the DSCHC office and obtain a DSCHC Identity Card that is used to identify the worker at the hospital they choose to attend for healthcare services. This is a standard process in all Health Insurance Programs all over the world,he stated.
Dr Nkechika argued that ” the above activity has been ongoing since August 2017 and a lot of workers and their families have obtained their DSCHC Identity Card and are receiving healthcare services when they need it with the Identity Card. However some workers have not adhered to the Government Circular instruction to obtain their DSCHC Identity Card which is required to access healthcare when needed. There are 26 DSCHC enrollee records validation and identity card collection stations in Delta State. One at the DSCHC Head office at Asaba and one at each LGA Headquarters DSCHC Laison office. Adhoc Registration Validation Centers were also located at the two Secretariate Buildings at Asaba for a period of 1 year to ease logistics requirement for workers during working hours. The validation and Identity Card process takes approximately just 5mins.
The Delta State Contributory Health Scheme according to the Commission’s D.G is currently recognized as the best health Insurance program in Nigeria. Most of the Scheme process are currently being adopted as a standard for the entire country. WHO, UNICEF, World Bank, Members of the National Assembly, Members of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Policy Kuru amongst others have all visited the Commission on a Study Tour and acclaimed the Scheme as the best in the country. UNICEF and WHO are now sponsoring other States in Nigeria for a Study Tour to learn the DSCHC operation processes for adoption in their State.
He also posited that “The Commission has won an award of Perfomance and Excellence for every year it has been in operation. Most notable is the Excellence Award from the Federal Government/World Bank in 2018 that was presented by the Vice President Prof Yemi Osibanjo himself”.
While reacting to the challenges the commission has created since it’s creation, Dr Nkechika opined that “There will always be initial challenges for a program that is novel. We have worked hard to ensure we overcome those challenges to continue to deliver quality service to all enrollees of the Scheme in a prudent and best practice process that meets world best standards”.
The DSCHC management through its Director- General categorically stated that ,it wish to reconfirm that all funds of the Commission are safe, secured and judiciously used for the services as stated in the Law establishing the DSCHC. The accounts of the DSCHC are audited by External Auditors yearly and it’s activities are scrutinized closely by representatives of the Labour Unions,the statement read .