The National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) has presented its digital transformation framework to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to accelerate the achievement of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in the country.
The Deputy Director General of the Programme, Press, Mr. Emmanuel Ononokpono, made this known in a statement which he signed and handed over to journalists in Abuja.
He said the framework was designed to deploy technology to process processes and achieve real-time results in the delivery of health insurance services.
Ononokpono quoted NHIS Executive Secretary Professor Mohammed Sambo as saying that tracing the framework’s trajectory depended on manual processes and rudimentary technology in the operation of health insurance.
Sambo said the framework, also known as eNHIS in health insurance, added that critical data was hosted outside the country by a South African company.
He explained that the situation presented issues of inefficiency in service delivery, as well as data security integrity.
According to him, the contracting company brings little value in human or material resources to the system.
Sambo said previous approvals for the execution of eNHIS in 2016 ran into procurement issues, limiting the initiative to uncertainties and non-implementation.
He said the collaboration with the Nigerian Communications Satellite (NIGCOMSAT) and the use of Presidential Executive Orders 003 and 005 and Federal Executive Council (FEC) approval enabled eNHIS to become a reality.
The NHIS boss said ‘the partnership with NIGCOMSAT has saved huge funds for the government’.
He listed the benefits of automating health insurance operations to include connectivity between stakeholders, real-time service delivery, complaint resolution, data analytics and an efficient call management system. , among others.
Ononokpono also said that EFCC Chairman Mr. Abdulrasheed Bawa called for integration of eNHIS system with National Identity Management Commission (NIMC)
database for synchronization purposes to avoid duplication of data collection.
Bawa said it was necessary to ensure data and server security for backups in various locations.
He said the security of ICT infrastructure should never be allowed to suffer any breach, noting that if service delivery was to be effective, sanctions should be imposed on facilities that failed to treat patients who had been paid under the program.
He expressed hope that eNHIS would reduce fraud in health insurance transactions, adding that a comparative study of how developed countries tackle unsound practices in health insurance would be useful.
The Program Director General, ICT, Mr. Nasiru Ikharo gave a comprehensive presentation of the eNHIS project, detailing the processes, prospects, linkages and benefits for Nigerians in the long run. (NOPE)