The Ogun Government says it has started the registration of 20,000 vulnerable individuals across its 20 local government areas for free and qualitative healthcare services in government-owned facilities.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr Tomi Coker, made this known on Tuesday, while monitoring the registration process under the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund at the Primary Health Centre, Iperu in Ikenne Local Government Area.
Coker said that the move was in line with the National Health Act of 2014 which established basic health provision fund for children up to age 5, pregnant women and people above 65 years old who could not afford to pay for health services from their pockets.
She said the treatment for the first set of the vulnerable would begin almost immediately.
The commissioner explained that the basic package under the fund includes antenatal care for the pregnant women as well as postnatal care up to six weeks.
She said that any treatment not available at the nearest primary health centere would be referred to the general hospital for further management.
“We are registering 1,000 persons per local government across the state while services would begin almost immediately in the next 60 days.
“Overall treatment will be given to children up to the age of 5 and other vulnerable persons will have access to treatment for headache, common malaria, blood pressure, diabetes, tuberculosis and other basic medical conditions,” she said.
The commissioner disclosed that the move would be followed by the official launch of state health insurance scheme which would involve contribution from both formal and informal sector.
Also speaking, the Executive Secretary, Ogun Health Insurance Agency, Dr Afolabi Dosumu, said his agency had selected one beneficiary per household across the wards through a nationally approved social register for indigent people.
He said that the registration card for each beneficiary would be processed using the Ogun State Health Insurance system software.
Dosumu said that after the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund has been fully launched, all the beneficiaries would begin to access healthcare without any financial stress.
He said that the government’s ultimate goal was to acheive universal health coverage.
One of the enrollees, Mr Ganiu Salami, said having access to affordable health care would be beneficial to him.
He said that resources he could have spent on healthcare would be used to feed his family.
Also, Mrs Muinat Ajike, who spoke on behalf of the aged people, expressed her gratitude to the state government.
She said that the scheme would bring relief to old people in her local government. (NAN)