Lagos unveils health insurance scheme

In line with the global drive for Universal Health Coverage, the Lagos State Government has launched Nigeria’s biggest mandatory health insurance scheme that would see all residents access basic healthcare from a contributory pool of funds.

This is even as the state is targeting an enrolment of at least 2.5 million residents in 2019 with a projection to reduce health issues by 10 per cent.

The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, said a huge chunk of the scheme is directed at the poor as it will enable them have access to healthcare without paying from their pockets.

“That is why the law establishing it says a minimum of one per cent of the consolidated revenue fund of the state will go into a pool which is an equity fund basically to address people who cannot afford to pay. That is to guarantee a financial protection for them. The contribution of the poor will be paid from that equity fund.

”Our law says every resident of the state must contribute. A civil servant or a market woman, everyone is meant to contribute to the scheme because this is the only way to go if we must improve our healthcare indices.”

Idris said for civil servants of the state, the government will pay 75 per cent of their contributions while they will pay 25 per cent from their own salaries, adding that they initially settled for 70/30 ratio, but that they eventually reduced that of civil servants to 25 per cent.

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