By; SAMSON YAKI, Lafia
Nasarawa State House of Assembly has on Wednesday passed the Health Insurance Scheme Bill 2018 to make health care services accessible to residents.
The passage of the bill followed a motion by the Majority Leader, Alhaji Tanko Tunga, during plenary in Lafia.
The Bill which is an executive Bill, was tagged the Bill for the Nasarawa State Health Insurance Scheme, 2018 and for other matters connected therewith.
The Speaker of the Assembly Ibrahim Balarabe Abdullahi said the aim of the scheme was to provide mandatory health insurance, which would entitle the insured person, their spouse and four children to obtain effective and affordable health care services.
According to the Speaker, the scheme will be mandatory and apply to all residents of the state except those who have proof of coverage by the National Health Insurance Scheme or other health schemes.
Balarabe Abdullahi said that the health insurance scheme would also protect families from financial hardship and huge medical bills.
“The objectives of the scheme shall be to control the rising cost of health care services and to ensure equitable distribution of health care costs among different income group.
“It is also to maintain high standard of health care delivery services with the scheme and to ensure efficiency in health care services”, Balarabe said.
He added that the Bill makes provision for the establishment of the state Health Insurance Agency and Governing Board with the aim to promote, regulate, supervise, implement and ensure effective administration of the scheme.
The speaker commended Governor Al-Makura for initiating the bill while restating the assembly’s commitment to continue to enact laws that would have direct bearing on the lives of the people of the state.
Earlier, while moving for the passage of the bill, Honourable Tunga sought the support of his colleagues considering the importance of health insurance scheme to the health and welfare of the people.
The House unanimously agreed for the passage of the bill as the speaker directed the clerk to the House to produce a clean copy of the bill for the governor’s assent.