Yobe, as one of the states said to be backward in almost every sector, is however making advances in healthcare delivery. YUSUF A YUSUF reports on how efforts are being made in that regards.
The establishment of Yobe State Contributory Healthcare Management Agency (YSCHMA) has replaced what is known as out-of-expenditure costs borne by civil servants in the state.
YSCHMA together with the long existing health agencies and development partners are helping the state towards achieving the Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
The agency is therefore established as a potential health-care financing strategy and option for funding health-care barriers towards accessing health services in the state.
The government of Yobe shows financial commitment towards fulfilling the conditions for universality, for example, as the state- fully-funded programme, equity and subsidized formal sector programmes were designed to provide expanded coverage for active civil servants, poor and vulnerable persons in the state to have access to free and qualitative healthcare services.
Sometimes in September 2020, the state government through YSCHMA flagged- off signing of the service level agreement with healthcare facilities and presented to stakeholders the agency’s operational guidelines that would guide health facilities towards ensuring that it is compliant in implementation by the participating healthcare providers in the state.
According to Dr Babagana Tijjani, the pioneer exercutive secretary of YSCHMA, “All hands must be on deck in putting a sustainable institutional framework for achieving the agency’s mandate towards inclusive coverage, affordable and qualitative healthcare services for all in our beloved state.”
Dr Tijjani informed the state governor, Mai Mala Buni while commissioning the newly-constructed YSCHMA Office in Damaturu that the agency through its ICT platform has enrolled a total of 136,897 beneficiaries and has immediately started card production for accessing the healthcare services in different healthcare facilities across the state in line with the scheme guidelines.
“From July 29, 2020, when the enrolment started to November 23, 2020, the agency has successfully registered a lot out of which 164,051 are currently accessing healthcare services under the formal sector programme across 196 health facilities in Yobe state and the enrolment continues,” Dr Tijjani said.
Under the scheme, informal sector programme is one of the most important contributory healthcare services that would enable larger part of the citizens to equally have qualitative access to effective and affordable healthcare services.
Dr Tijjani who was recently on sensitisation tour on the informal sector programme noted that, among those to be targeted under the informal sector programme include all artisans, farmers, self employed individuals, unions and association as well as rural communities, among others.
While going round the health facilities where the programme is carried out, it was observed that the beneficiaries only made payment of 10% out of their medical bill unlike before when someone had to pay 100% on medical expenses.