Anambra state government says it has laid the foundation for sustainable and progressive growth in the health sector, through its health financing system.
Governor Willie Obiano stated this over the weekend in Awka during a 3-day training for 40 enumerators on Health Account Study themed, “Strengthening Anambra State Health System for Primary Health Care Delivery.”
The Health Account Study which was started in 2018 showed that out-of-pocket of Anambra residents was at 91.9 percent, an alarming development that spelt low indices for the state health sector.
The 2021 activity will be a 30-day exercise- three days of training and 27 days of field work.
Governor Obiano who was represented by the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Vincent Okpala, said the study of 2018 and 2019 enabled government to generate necessary data for implementation of policies and programmes in the health sector, one of which is the State Health Insurance Scheme.
According to him, the target is to bring down individual out-of-pocket expenditure on health to about 30 to forty percent.
He expressed joy over the easy access of the people of the state to quality and affordable healthcare through the adoption model which, he said many States in the country were trying to adopt.
“The result of the study conducted in 2018 led to the establishment of the State Health Insurance Scheme which had impacted positively on lives of the citizens.
“While the 2018 study showed 91 9% reduction of the out-of-pocket expenditure, that of 2019 dropped to 89.9%.
“We’re targeting a 30% drop this year and the way we’re going in our insurance scheme we’ll get to zero expenses.
“Of the six building blocs of good healthcare delivery system which include, essential medication, Healthcare financing, Workforce, Data management, Service delivery, Governance and leadership, healthcare financing remained one of the most important of achieving good healthcare service delivery,” he said
Describing the project as foundational, progressive and sustainable, the commissioner charged the enumerators to take the training seriously to ensure the goal of the program was actualized.
Earlier, Head, Directorate, Planning, Research and Statistics in the Ministry, Edith Nwachukwu said the participants were drawn from the Federal and State Ministry of Health as well as Primary Health Care agencies.
She said the outcome of the exercise would enable government plan and make informed decisions towards reducing individual catastrophic spendings as well as lessen the burden on the citizens.
“The enumerators are to visit to households, NGOs, health facilities, insurance agencies, companies among others to aggregate and analyze their health expenses after which the sample will be used to ascertain the percentage of expenses on health services.
“We’ll be carrying out aggressive awareness campaign including radio jingles to sensitise people on the essence of the activity in addition to kitting the enumerators with aprons for easy identification and to forestall perceived apprehension from recipients,” she added.