BY AMEH IDUJAGI, JALINGO – The Taraba State Government has announced the commencement of the process of domesticating the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to enhance healthcare delivery in the state.

The State Commissioner for Health, Dr Innocent Vakai, who announced this at the commencement of a six days Health Facility Baseline Assessment Training for Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) taking place in Jalingo, said the training was organised by the Taraba State Ministry of Health in collaboration with the Taraba State Primary Health Care Development Agency (TSPHCDA) and the State Contributory Health Insurance Agency (TSCHIA).

Vakai noted that access to emergency health care delivery in the state is one of the major areas of needs for the state, adding that the domestication of the NHIS in the state would address some of the challenges.

According to him; “Access to adequate health care services for the poor and vulnerable citizens in the state remains a major challenge which, we think, the adoption of the NHIS approach will squarely address”.

Vakai also said that the commencement of the training of primary health facility managers was aimed at achieving the provision of health care services at the grassroots.

The commissioner said that with about 70 per cent of the population residing in rural areas and 30 in urban centres, adopting the NHIS system would cover a lot of ground.

He announced that the state government has approved the establishment of one per cent of its Consolidated Revenue Allocation for the state health insurance programme, adding that the government has concluded the installation of Covid-19 testing facility at the State Specialist Hospital, Jalingo.

Vakai assured that henceforth, Covid-19 samples would no longer be taken to Abuja and oter places for test.

Earlier, the Executive Secretary, TSPHCDA Alhaji Aminu Hassan, commended the state government for giving priority attention to the health sector in general and primary health care services in particular.

Aminu however noted that the state is yet to benefit from the Basic Health Care Provision Fund, saying that the training would give participants the basic training on the generation of data for the effective provision of basic health care service delivery in the state.

The Taraba State Basic Health Care Provision Fund was established in 2014 with the aim of providing basic health to indigent communities and the vulnerable population.

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