Home » Governance » Govt Works On Health Insurance Model

Government is working on a comprehensive funding model that will see all people, employed or not, paying a fixed amount towards a pool expected to improve access to quality healthcare by all.Once the system is in place, no one will pay when visiting a health institution.

Deriving from similar practices elsewhere, the model will see every Zimbabwean contributing to the improvement of healthcare.

It will also complement Government budgetary allocations and the National Aids Trust, which have been hailed for co-ordinating and financing HIV and Aids national responses.

This comes as Government moves to fulfil the Abuja Declaration, which stipulates that at least five percent of the total national budget be allocated to the health sector.

Speaking after touring Chegutu and Kadoma hospitals last week, Health and Child Care Deputy Minister Dr Paul Chimedza said funding from the fiscus was inadequate to cater for the population.

“We have looked at different countries – we have looked at Rwanda (and) Tanzania, and other developed countries. They have different models, health insurance funds, for example, where everybody whether you are under five years or over 65 years, your healthcare is paid for from a national fund.”

Dr Chimedza said the fiscus was burdened by numerous competing priorities in a constrained economy.

The Rwandan model sees each individual paying US$5 yearly to the fund and as such basic health services are free.

Dr Chimedza said there were different ways of doing it, but the model would broadly ensure that even those in the rural areas contributed something to the fund.

He said the money would be disbursed to individual health institutions for infrastructure development and equipment upgrades.

“Not only those that are working, but even those that are selling tomatoes, those that are at home growing rapoko in the rural areas (will contribute), so that once we have a fund, anyone can walk in an institution that is well maintained.

“Each institution will be given money to maintain the buildings, to buy the latest equipment and make sure that the services there are available to everyone. We believe we can do this and come up with such a fund and it will revolutionalise the way we fund our healthcare sector.”

Dr Chimedza said consultations were ongoing.

Rwanda has improved healthcare financing over the last 14 years with elimination of patient cash payments.

The fund has ensured that the poor have access to quality healthcare.

Source : The Herald

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