The Ekiti State government has disclosed its plan to invest the sum of N270 million to provide free health services for some citizens under the State Health Insurance Scheme(SHIS).
The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Oyebanji Filani, said an aggregate of 20,000 individuals, ranging from pregnant women, children, poor and aged persons, will be qualified for the scheme.
The Commissioner said this at the palace of the Ogoga of Ikere, Oba Adejimi Adu on Thursday, during an interactive session on the plans of the state government to improve healthcare delivery in the state.
The Commissioner said the programme is meant to ensure improved healthcare delivery, longer life expectancy, free healthcare services and prevention of untimely deaths among the citizens.
He said: “This insurance programme covers pregnant women, poor people, children below the age of five, and the aged but indigent. It is a partnership between the federal and state governments and it is going to be a first-come, first-serve policy.
“A sum of N270 million has been earmarked for the scheme that will benefit an aggregate of 20,000 persons. Let all our people that are qualified make themselves available when the time comes. Every treatment for the beneficiaries will be free.
” A sum of N15,000 is budgeted for each beneficiary, but will not be given to them in cash. But for them to be qualified for registration, they must get their National Identity Cards and National Identification Numbers(NIN)”.
The Commissioner appealed to Ekiti people to take the issue of COVID- 19 seriously, saying a total of 96 infected persons are currently receiving treatments at the three isolation centres.
“This disease is real and is killing every day. Very soon, we will have the vaccine for COVID-19. It is like a fluid and it is not being injected to monitor us as being rumoured. Tell our people to get innoculated. We are starting with elderly and health personnel who are the most vulnerable”.
He said the government of Ekiti State has begun aggressive rehabilitation of primary healthcare facilities across 177 wards in the state, assuring that the government will renovate seven facilities in Ikere Local Government alone.
“We are not going to rehabilitate them alone, we will provide equipment like Blood Pressure Machine, test kits for sugar level, PCV test kits, T-scan, delivery beds, Ultrasound and X-ray Machines to be able to dispense services to the people.
“In October 2020, Ekiti Hospitals’ Management Board employed 10 doctors. The primary Healthcare Development Agency employed nine. We are also recruiting nurses and pharmacists. More NYSC doctors and Nurses will be posted to Ekiti, the governor has done all the arrangements.
“We are looking up to our traditional rulers, religious leaders and other community leaders to monitor the facilities. It is important that we get feedback from you about how people patronise the facilities, efficiency of the personnel and what you are lacking in these facilities”.
Oba Adu promised that the community will continue to partner the government to ensure that facilities are protected and live up to their biddings of dispensing quality healthcare to Ikere residents.
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