FG Urged to Redesign National Health Insurance Scheme


Hammed Shittu in Ilorin
An Ilorin-based Pharmacist, Mustapha Malik, has called on the federal government to redesign a better way of making the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) work in the country.

This, he said would assist the government to implement the scheme as it is being implemented in Europe and other parts of the world.

Malik who spoke with journalists in Ilorin over the weekend said that, “Despite the fact the government policy on the scheme, which is to reduce the cost of drugs to beneficiaries, is highly commendable,the biggest problem pharmacists are facing in the implementing of the programme has to do with the point of payment from the intermediaries or vendors of the scheme.”

He lamented that, most of these vendors of the scheme have defaulted in the payment of the money meant for the scheme or even at worst, absconded at the detriment of the pharmacy who supplied them the drugs.

He, therefore, suggested that the federal government should introduce a cooperative bank that will be paying the pharmacy monthly or quarterly so as to ensure full success of the programme.

The Pharmacist also appealed to the federal government to urgently do something about the rising rate of the Dollar against the Naira which he regretted was now affecting and killing the health sector in particular and other areas of the economy.

Malik blamed the high rate of death today to the high cost of drugs which most patients cannot afford and have to result to local herbs which in most cases end up destroying their kidney and liver.

He also called for the reverse in the appointment of doctors as Chief Medical Directors (CMDs) of hospitals in the country as it was in the past where directors of administration were at the helms of affairs of teaching hospitals and not necessarily a doctor.

Malik described the health unit across the world as a circle which involves pharmacist, doctors, nurses, laboratory attendants and even the cleaners and stewards and criticised the belief that the doctors are more superior to others in the medical circle.

He explained that the doctors always claim superiority over pharmacists because in the past, early doctors trained early pharmacist who were then referred to as dispensers and were much involved in politics which made them have upper hands over other medical practitioners.