By Nofisat Marindoti
The State Government of Osun under the leadership of Governor Rauf Aregbesola has embarked on an Health Insurance Scheme as part of efforts to make the people of the state have access to quality health care delivery without financial impediment.
Governor Aregbesola appointed the former Chairman of the Nigeria Medical Association, (NMA) Dr Niyi Ogini, as the Executive Secretary to pilot the scheme christened Osun Health Insurance Scheme (O’HIS).
Speaking at a sensitization meeting to educate the media and civil society organization on the scheme, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Health, Dr Olugbenga Oyinlola said the scheme was carefully designed to help the less privileged get treatment in the hospitals.
Oyinlola who noted that quality health care delivery was one of the responsibilities of the government, said nobody should be denied quality healthcare.
He added that there was need for media practitioners and other stakeholders to come together and map out ways by which the people of the state can have access to quality healthcare without financial impediment.
One of the facilitators at the sensitization, Dr Funto Ogundapo while presenting an overview of the health insurance scheme, said provision of quality healthcare delivery is a right of the people and urged them to participate actively in the scheme.
She explained that the scheme will prevent the burden of catastrophic health expenditure and encouraged the people of the state to access to quality healthcare at the appropriate time.
Declaring the workshop open, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Lani Baderinwa urged the media to propagate the scheme so that the people of the state would key into it.
Baderinwa also used the occasion to debunk the news making the rounds that there was case of lassa fever in the state, saying there is no outbreak of Lassa fever in any part of the state.
He said there has not been any report on the spread of the disease by the medical personnels who are observing patients in hospitals.
According to him, “There is no reason for anybody to panic on the report of a suspected Lassa fever case in the state. What was reported is an isolated death case of a young man who came from a neighbouring state. The young man who was suspected of carrying Lassa fever disease from the neighbouring state died at the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital Complex, Ile-Ife.
“As a proactive measure, the medical personnel had to quarantine those who had contact with the strayed deceased for observation. This is a normal medical procedure, and does not mean the quarantined people are possibly carrying lassa fever disease. As at today, there has not been any other confirmed Lassa fever case except that of the young man from a neighbouring state that died at the OAUTHC.
“All necessary steps to prevent the outbreak of this disease or any other one in Osun had been pro actively taken. Filth and dirt’s are been regularly taken care of, while medical personnel had been on red alert to ensure any unexpected disease outbreak is contained.
“As far as prevention is concerned, Osun government has been proactive while all curative efforts are already set in place. We urge people to make sure that their environment is clean and keep their foodstuffs away from rodents,” he said.
He, therefore, urged the people of the not to panic, as there was no spread of Lassa fever in the state.
Our Correspondent gathers that a nongovernmental organization, Health Finance and Governance in partnership with the National Health Insurance Scheme would be providing technical supports to the state on the scheme to make it successful.