Rep. Iyawe alleged that funds meant for the implementation of the National Health Insurance Policy are being mismanaged, while some HMOs fail to remit funds or pay monthly capitations to the healthcare provider.
The House of Representatives has directed its Committee on Health Care Services to investigate allegations of mismanagement of funds and other irregularities in the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA).
The committee is also to look into allegations of corruption in the agency as well as failure to effectively implement the National Health Insurance Policy.
The directive is contained in a motion titled “Alleged Mismanagement of Funds and Other Irregularities in the Operations of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA)”, at Tuesday’s plenary.
Sponsor of the motion, Rep. Esosa Iyawe (LP, Edo) noted that the NHIA was established to make quality healthcare accessible and affordable for every citizen, but said the agency has failed woefully in achieving this.
Iyawe also said that only 3% of persons in the formal sector have access to health insurance, while more than 170 million Nigerians are without Health Insurance, adding that out of a population of about 200 million, only about four million Nigerians are covered under the scheme.
This, according to him, is contrary to claims by the Agency that over 10 million Nigerians are currently enrolled in the programme.
He also noted that the health insurance programme has been fraught with poor service delivery by Health Maintenance Organisations (HMOs) and low-quality services of healthcare service providers.
The lawmaker further alleged that funds allocated for the implementation of the national health insurance policy are being mismanaged just as some HMOs have failed to remit funds or pay monthly capitations to the healthcare provider.
“There have been reports that in some hospitals, the pharmacy for patients covered by the NHIA is separate from the hospital’s main pharmacy, and is allegedly stocked with low-quality drugs, as against the main pharmacy.”
Iyawe posited that the implementation of the scheme had been marred by corruption, lack of transparency and accountability, irregularities among HMOs, and ill-treatment of enrollees by healthcare providers.
Consequently, the House mandated the committee to investigate the irregularities in NHIA to ensure that the needed actions could be taken.