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World Bank earmarks $4m for Kwara health sector

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Success Nwogu, Ilorin

The World Bank has earmarked the sum of $4m to strengthen health care service delivery in Kwara State.

The Head of World Bank’s Health in Africa Initiative, Prof. Khama Rogo, disclosed this during the inauguration of the Kwara Health Insurance scheme in Ilorin, capital of the state on Wednesday.

Rogo, who is also the bank’s Lead Health Sector Specialist, stated that many African leaders had attempted to carry out the health insurance scheme in their respective countries without success.

He described the scheme as a restoration of dignity to the people of Kwara State.

In his address, Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed noted that the state government had set aside N200m as an initial capitalisation of Kwara State Health Insurance Fund.

Stressing that the government would contribute one per cent of the annual Consolidated Revenue Fund to the fund, he said it would also subsidise premiums and service delivery to those considered to be among the poorest in the society. The governor said the Kwara Health Insurance Scheme had become compulsory for all the residents of the state.

He called on all to register and take advantage of the state-wide scheme to access affordable health care delivery in the state.

Ahmed said, “The Kwara Health Insurance Law also provides for the establishment of the Kwara Health Insurance Fund, which will pool resources from various sources, including a premium contribution from residents, the state government subsidy for the poor, multi-lateral grants, donations, support from the Federal Government and the National Health Insurance Scheme.

“An initial N200m had been set aside as the state’s capitalisation of the KHIF and to ensure that the scheme is well funded.”

In his address, the Executive Secretary, National Health Insurance Scheme, Prof. Yusuf Usman, promised to partner the state to guarantee the success of the scheme.

Also, the Executive Secretary, Kwara State Health Insurance Scheme, Dr. Bunmi Jetawo-Winter, noted that the scheme was thought-out and carefully planned to ensure affordable and accessible health care service delivery across the state.

She added that each enrollee would pay only N25 premium per day.

Jetawo-Winter said the Kwara State Health Insurance Agency would commence registration for the State Health Insurance Scheme in August.  According to her, the registration will hold for 90 days across the 193 wards of the State.

She stated that during the period of registration, the agency would capture all baseline health information and the bio-data of all residents, which would also form the bedrock of standardisation of operations of the scheme.

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