Governor Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State has decried resident’s low enrollment into the state’s contributory health Insurance scheme.
The governor expressed his disappointment when he received the report of the state Primary Healthcare Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in Minna.
Bello blamed the low enrollment of residents in the scheme to lack of adequate awareness, adding that people were somewhat cynical because they do not have confidence in the system.
According to him, the lack of confidence is due to them not getting value for what they have paid for. He, however, expressed optimism that when people begin to enjoy the benefits of the scheme, more residents would register. The governor said that the whole scheme was relatively new to the people unlike elsewhere in the world where it was fully operational and mandatory.
Bello said that the health insurance scheme would eventually pickup in the state, stressing that it was the only way that hospitals would be properly maintained and sustained on the long term.
He gave assurance that the state government would continue to engage and fulfill its obligations to development partners and donors especially with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Earlier, the state Commissioner of Health and Hospital Services, Dr Mohammed Makusidi, enumerated the countless achievements and successes recorded by the state government through the partnership with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation