Parliament’s Committee on Health on Friday, April 1 sent away officials of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) and demanded the presence of Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta.
The NHIA officials had appeared before the committee with a formula for allocation for 2022. During the meeting, it emerged government has released less than 10 percent of the over 2 billion cedis due to the authority.
The Finance Minister, the officials disclosed has directed the authority to cut its allocation which has been approved by Parliament by 30%.
Speaking to the media Deputy Ranking Member on the committee Kwabena Mintah Akandoh disclosed that the development is affecting the operations of the NHIS.
He said “As we have always indicated to know how much the government of Ghana has collected in the name of the National Health Insurance Scheme with respect to 2021. As part of the practices of the House, the National Health Insurance Authority is supposed to appear before us every year, especially with respect to its formula.
“Today, as part of the procedure they appeared before the Parliamentary Select Committee on Health. They presented a document to us which is titled; ‘National Health Insurance Authority, National Health Insurance Fund allocation for 2022.’ We checked, page 10 by their own records, which says the government of Ghana has collected ¢2.056bn in the name of National Health Insurance in the year 2021 and they have released ¢127million, less than 10 per cent of the amount collected in the year 2021.
“Again, when we considered the 2022 budget of which an Appropriations Act has been passed, we approved an amount of about 3.3 billion cedis. When you look at their formula, they are formulating their formula around 2.6billion whiles the budget‘s appropriations act has approved 3.3 billion.
“Clearly, there is some disparity. When we asked them, the response we had was that they have received instructions to cut down this budget by 30 per cent.
“We don’t make laws on the floor of the House for people to sit in their office to alter the law. So with these two reasons, we asked them to go back and come with the Minister responsible for Finance because the NHIS Act is clear that when you collect these monies you are supposed to lodge them into the NHIS Fund within 30 days after the collection.”