The National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) will go digital by 2019 with the introduction of a nationwide electronic renewal or mobile renewal project.
This, the authority explained, was necessary to reduce the stress clients or beneficiaries endure any time they go to renew their NHIS cards.
According to the Northern Regional Manager of the NHIS, Mr Issahaque Abdul Latif, the programme has been piloted in two districts – West Mamprusi municipality in the Northern Region and Asuogyaman district in the Eastern Region.
“To pilot a project sometimes, you have to even look at first, the population; second, you have to look at the literacy level. If we had chosen Tamale, people would have said most people are literate, so, if it is even successful, how is it practicable when you go to a rural community? So, [we chose] West Mamprusi because we knew that it was a bridge between those in typical rural areas and those in the modern world and [it has been] tremendously successful”, he said.
He expressed confidence that the initiative will help solve the usual congestion and long queues at the various NHIS offices across the country.
“The first day we launched it, just within six hours, over 238 people had registered. Were it manual, you cannot renew for about 238 at a go. But within six hours, from 8:00am to 2pm, we were done with about 238 people. That tells you that is the way to go and since then it has been very successful.”
Mr Latif revealed that even though the authority has studied best practices across the globe, what the NHIS is operating is different from all other countries.
He said it is an amalgamation of best practices from Germany, United Kingdom and the United States of America.
The NHIS, he added, is also introducing other innovations such as e-receipts and e-claims. He said the process has begun in the Bole and Sawla districts of the Northern Region.