altThe Trust Hospital, with links to the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), does not attend to patients who subscribe to the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).

This is in spite of the fact that the hospital is affiliated to the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), which retains two-and-half per cent of the 17.5 per cent contribution of the social security contributions of Ghanaians as a source of funding for the NHIS.
But the hospital’s management maintains that the decision not to attend to NHIS card holders is to decongest the hospital and introduce some level of sanity into health delivery at the hospital.

Speaking to the Daily Graphic, the General Manager of the hospital, Dr Darius Kofi Osei, said the move was to reduce the strain associated with operating general services.

“We are trying to discourage people coming to the centre of Accra just to treat malaria when they can get the treatment at our peripheral facilities,” he said.

He said in order not to deny the hospital’s clientele its services, all its satellite clinics in Tema Community 2, Dome, Sakumono and Adentan accepted the NHIS card.

Checks at the Trust Clinic at Adenta confirmed that the NHIS card was acceptable at the clinic.

With an average of 300 patients to take care of daily in the past, Dr Osei noted that the decision had rather helped to reduce the pressure on the hospital as currently averagely 200 patients were attended to daily.

“The clinics are where we have concentrated the consultants. Once it is a consultancy, and you are referred here, we will take care of you.”

While the hospital was making a case for turning the down NHIS subscribers, Mr Michael Adjei, who was once refused treatment at the hospital, told the Daily Graphic so far as he was a SSNIT contributor, he had the it right to receive health care at the hospital.

“My SSNIT contribution is used to support the NHIS. It, therefore, does not make sense that the very organisation that receives the contribution has a hospital that refuses to attend to my health needs. This is unacceptable. “

According to Section 78 (1) (b) of the NHIS Law (Act 650), sources of funding for the national health insurance policy include two and one half per cent of each person’s 17 and one half per cent contribution to the Social Security and Pensions Scheme Fund.

Mr Adjei argued that it was discriminatory for the hospital to deny subscribers of some geographic location their service with the excuse that there were satellite clinics.

But Dr Osei maintained that the decision was in the best interest of both the hospital and its patrons.

“It is not just service people need. People really need quality care. What sense does it make if for the whole day, people queue here but don’t get the service they require?” he asked.

The General Manager said, “If we are not doing what we are implementing now and we open the hospital to everybody, you can imagine the confusion. The issue is also not just about health care but also staffing and capacity. As we speak, the place is congested.”

At the time the Daily Graphic visited the hospital, the Outpatients Department (OPD) was filled with patients.

From: Daily Graphic

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