The Nationwide Mutual Healthcare (NMH), Ghana?s premier private mutual health insurance scheme, has begun activities marking its 10th anniversary.
Activities for the 10-day event include power walk and free health screening and special donations to the La General Hospital and the Princess Marie Louise Children?s Hospital.
NMH was founded in 2003with a vision to be the dominant financier of healthcare services in the private medical sector.
Currently, it has corporate entities subscriber base of 480 and membership subscriber base of over 55,000 with an annual growth rate of 65 per cent.
Speaking at the launch Mrs Nancy Ampah, the Chief Executive Officer, said ?10 years is a major milestone for an institution, as a lot of institutions go out of business in about 7 years.?
?Compared to other insurance companies, our company is still adolescent. On the other hand, 10 years in a relatively new sector that is constantly and rapidly advancing is an achievement we can be proud of,? she said.
?It means we have managed to establish ourselves in this sector. We’ve claimed our rightful place here. We have emerged on the national stage as the leading private healthcare insurer.?
Mrs Ampah said a little over 10 years ago, the only way of financing healthcare was ?cash and carry? and all payments for healthcare were out of pocket.
She said the NHIS was the best social and pro-poor intervention that had ever been implemented but the role of the private health insurance schemes was greatly underemphasized.
The CEO said: ?We believe that by empowering and encouraging the private health insurance sector, those who can afford to pay for their healthcare would do so through the private health insurance and thereby liberating the scarce resources to enable government execute its social intervention for the poor.?
Mrs Ampah paid glowing tribute to the founding members of NMH, namely Nana Ampem Awuah-Darko, Dr Andre Badohu, Dr Edward Abbah-Foli, Dr Yaw Kudom, Dr Komi Agbemabiese, Mr. Harold Awuah-Darko, Mr. David Sangmor Dr Carl Tetteh, and Mr. Anthony Sowah, for their foresight, vision, commitment and tenacity.
Mr Anthony Sowah, NMH General Manager, said challenges facing the health insurance industry in Ghana were weak industry regulation, premium undercutting, poor market practices and volatile economic conditions.
The rest are exploitative service providers, limited funding space and general low income levels.