It’s Time To Refurbish The Image Of The NHIS –Sylvester Mensah

The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) has unveiled a new brand to consolidate the changing phase of the NHIS with the hope to refurbish the image of the Scheme and mark the program’s next chapter of growth. Chief Executive of the NHIA, Sylvester A. Mensah, in a speech at the launch of the 10th anniversary commemoration of the NHIS remarked that “the backdrop of organisational restructuring, growth of the Scheme and international recognition, embody the changing identity of the NHIS.” He said “back in 2003, it was a newly born baby with great promise. Now in 2013, the NHIS is a well known brand, maturing with age and experience, and undergoing identity transformation.” With the enhanced brand, the NHIS now takes on a new tagline; your access to healthcare. Mr Mensah was of the view that the 10th anniversary of the NHIS presents an opportunity to “refurbish and enhance its image in order to reflect its improvements over time, growth at home, and high profile abroad.” He further stated that this was the time to enhance the brand to renew faith in the purpose of the NHIS and hopefully bestow all benefits that a reinvigorated brand identity has to offer.” According to him, the enhancement of the brand is also aimed at building a strong, impactful, sustainable and positive image for the NHIS brand, sending signals to stakeholders, as well as managing behaviour and communication. “The enhancement of the NHIS brand is therefore not just in name. It is dictated by the substance that makes the NHIS what it is today; a renewed entity, and comes with a dual brand promise – the instant issuance of NHIS ID Cards to subscribers and improved efficiency in the operations of the Authority and the Scheme,” Mr Mensah observed. He was quick to add that even before the unveiling of this new enhanced brand identity, the NHIS had already been delivering on the promise and will continue to deliver on the promise well into the foreseeable future. He said the NHIA needs the co-operation of all stakeholders. According to him, “whilst the NHIS pays the medical bills for its members, who are promised a generous Benefit Package, the experience of subscribers is at the healthcare facilities. He therefore urged all healthcare providers and other stakeholders to support the NHIS to meet the expectations of our cherished subscribers.” Mr Mensah paid glowing tribute to past and present administrators of the Scheme for bringing the Scheme thus far. Deputy Health Minister, Dr Tia Alfred Sugri who launched the 10th anniversary commemoration said that during the 10-year journey of the NHIS, it has witnessed a significant number of initiatives which together have made the scheme what it is today. Notable amongst these he said were the “setting up of the ICT platform in 2007, the introduction of the free maternal care program in 2008, the institution of clinical audits in 2009, the establishment of a claims processing centre in 2010, establishment of the NHIS call centre in 2012, piloting of capitation in 2012 and the implementation of a Biometric membership system in 2013 to provide instant ID cards to subscribers and assure effective authentication at the point of service delivery.” The launch event saw in attendance many personalities from business, academia, the public sector and other professional bodies. The anniversary which was on the theme ‘Towards Universal Health Coverage: Increasing Enrolment whilst Ensuring Sustainability’ will cover a two-month period to be climaxed by an International Conference from November 4-6, 2013. The launch of the 10th anniversary gives way for the official start of the issuance of the instant NHIS ID cards based on biometric data. A number of activities including regional inter-schools quiz competitions, lecture series, health walks, special registration and district health screening exercises have been planned to mark the 10th anniversary of the NHIS.