Sokoto State on Wednesday launched a community contributory health scheme with N100 million as seed capital.
Speaking at the event, Governor Aminu Tambuwal described the take off of the scheme as one of the most important interventions of his administration in the health sector.
He said the seed fund for the scheme will ensure the implementation of the universal health coverage through contributions from various stakeholders.
According to Mr. Tambuwal, the scheme is an important policy that will positively impact the lives of the people of the state.
“It will also protect families from the financial hardship of huge medical bills and limit the inflationary rise in the cost of healthcare services in all parts of the state,” the governor stated.
“Apart from ensuring equitable distribution of healthcare costs across different income groups, this scheme will improve and harness private sector participation in the provision of healthcare services in Sokoto,” he added.
In his remarks , Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Abubakar, dispelled the notion that Islam is against contributory health scheme, saying the religion encourages members of the society to help each other at all times.
Giving an insight into the benefits to be derived from the scheme, the state commissioner of health, Kakale Shuni, said the new policy would ensure that residents of Sokoto have access to effective, quality and affordable healthcare services.
“It will facilitate training of human resource development and ensure availability of alternative source of funding to the health sector for improved service,” Mr. Shuni said.
While commending the Sokoto state government for its foresight in implementing the policy, the Executive Secretary of the National Health Insurance Scheme, NHIS, Usman Yusuff, said the benefit of the policy will be felt by generations to come.
Others who spoke at the event, which also served as the beginning of a sensitisation programme for religious scholars and community leaders on the importance of the scheme, include the Emir of Gwandu, Muhammad Iliyasu, and the Director-General of Ja’iz Foundation, Adamu Babangida Ibrahim.