Private healthcare facilities seek prompt reimbursements from NHIA
King Nii Tackie Teiko Tsuru II (left), Ga Mantse, in a handshake with Dr Nana Ayew Afriyie, Chairwoman of the Parliamentary Health Committee. Photo: Maxwell Ocloo
The Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Health, Dr Nana Ayew Afriyie, said the private health sector was suffering from the current economic situation in the country.
The situation, he says, has disastrous consequences for the general health of the population.
Dr Afriye, who is an MP for Effiduase/Asokore Constituency in the Ashanti Region, made this known during the 2nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Private Healthcare Facilities Association of Ghana (PHFAoG ) in Accra yesterday.
The 3-day conference is themed: Addressing Challenges Facing Private Healthcare Providers in Ghana – The Role of the State.
Dr Afriye has therefore called on the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) to ensure that it pays private providers on time to help address the problem of co-payment in private facilities.
According to him, 70% of things used in hospitals are imported and as a result the current free fall of the cedi coupled with NHIA payment delays was pushing private healthcare providers to the brink of collapse.
Despite the current challenges that the private health facilities, which Dr Afriye described as a social sector, were going through, they were also being harassed by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) with new taxes and said the GRA should give a human face to their work.
Furthermore, he blamed the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) saying that the 2.5% tax on the NHIA was not being paid and therefore leaving the NHIA handicapped, a situation which he said , was the main cause of the end of reimbursement for service providers.
Dr Afriyie said it was time for the Ministry of Health to provide grants to providers so they could use them to protect themselves from difficult economic conditions and continue to partner with the government to provide quality health care. quality to the people.
He said providers had no choice but to pass on some of the payments to patients.
The national chairman of private health facilities in Ghana, Dr Kwame Buabeng Frimpong, said it was pathetic to know that private health service providers were making frantic efforts to support the government’s plans to make health care accessible and affordable healthcare for all.
According to him, the government had a big role to play in helping to minimize, if not eliminate, the many difficult challenges facing private health services and mentioned some of the main challenges to include institutional liquidity explaining that at Over the years, the erratic reimbursement pattern by the NHIA and the various private health insurance plans have resulted in severe states of financial inadequacy for many private health care facilities.
He said the erratic reimbursement of submitted claims placed an unbearable financial burden on institutions, forcing many to adopt one or more coping strategies, some of which could be described as unacceptable, unapproved or illegal.
He further called on the NHIA to consider upward revisions to the July 2022 tariff to reflect current market trends and currency dynamics, saying that “we would be very grateful if the NHIA could invite us to join the table. who will discuss the changes”.
Dr Frimpong called on the government to balance staff distribution scales to ensure that all sectors have sufficient resources for maximum efficiency.
“Besides the fact that we are struggling to keep some of these professionals in our facilities, we are seeing the export or exodus of the necessary personnel to countries such as Barbados, the United Kingdom, the United States of America and Canada,” he said.
The Special Advisor to the Minister of Health, Dr Baffour Awuah, who represented the Minister, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, assured that the ministry was working on the challenges faced by private healthcare providers.
He called on them to take advantage of some of the policies of the ministry of health such as human resources for health to inform themselves.