The Health Minister-designate Kwaku Agyemang-Manu has admitted before the vetting committee that the claims by President Akufo-Addo that the National Health Insurance under former president John Dramani Mahama was in a coma, was a political statement.
He however noted the scheme was collapsing under the previous Mahama administration.
He was responding to a question by the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu on whether he as a former minister inherited a scheme that was in a coma.
The nominee initially answered yes when he was asked if he inherited a scheme that was in a coma as stated in the 2016 manifesto of the New Patriotic Party.
The Minority leader after the nominee responded asked why some countries traveled to Ghana to understudy the scheme that has been tagged as one that was in a coma.
Mr. Aggemang-Manu in responding said the system that was set up attracted many people but that did not mean that the scheme was facing challenges.
He said when he took over, there were 12 months arrears owed facilities but currently, only 5 months arrears are owed.
Speaking to the nation in his first State of The Nation Address in 2917, President Akufo-Addo said his government would revamp the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to widen access to basic healthcare.
“The National Health Insurance Scheme remains the best option we have devised to ensure that as many people as possible have access to health care in our clinics and hospitals,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo, however, stated that the scheme was not in a good state, especially when it owed too many providers money for their services to the most vulnerable in society.
The NHIS has come under criticism for its debts to providers, a situation which has been precipitated by the inability of the Ministry of Finance (MoF) to release funds to the authority for onward payment to service providers.
“They are threatening to opt out and stop offering their services,” he added.