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Uganda: Govt Plans To Withdraw Bill Introducing National Health Insurance Scheme

The government is set to withdraw the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) 2019 following disagreements between various stakeholders.

Dr Moriku Kaducu, the State minister of Health for Primary Healthcare, said last week that there are disagreements on core issues like contributions and benefits of the scheme.

“The Ministry of Health had a meeting with the President, key stakeholders from the private sector, National Social Security Fund and other insurance regulatory authorities. We wanted to confirm whether they were in consensus with that Bill. However, some key stakeholders are still not in agreement,” Dr Kaducu said in a telephone interview with Daily Monitor.

Dr Kaducu revealed that the key disagreement is on the issue of contributions. She added: “We have to pull resources together from various segments of the population; rich and poor and put it together, that is the key objective.”
The Ministry of Health in collaboration with other stakeholders is undertaking further consultations to ensure all the stakeholders are in agreement before reintroducing the Bill.

The NHIS 2019 Bill requires all Ugandans above 18 years to contribute to the scheme before accessing health services across the country. Employees in the formal sector will be subjected to a 4% deduction from their salaries while their employers will contribute 1% to the health scheme. Individuals in the informal sector will pay a proposed UGX100, 000 ($27.30) annually.

Since 2006, when the government announced plans to introduce a NHIS under which all Ugandan residents would be required to have a health insurance policy, many stakeholders have criticised the plan calling it another burden to employees and arguing that it might increase the already high cost of doing business in the country.

Source MEIR

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