AYADECARE: Private Medical Practitioners are allow to join


Members of the Association of Nigerian Private Medical Practitioners, ANPMP, Cross River State chapter met with the Management of the State Ministry of Health at the Ministry’s headquarters today.

The interactions which came on the heels of the Association’s courtesy visit to felicitate with the new Permanent Secretary, Dr. Iwara I. Iwara, provided a chance for the group to present some of their appeals for consideration. Notably, the group while making her presentations underscored the issues of multiple taxations from the State Agencies on Revenue, their readiness to get involved in the State Health Insurance Scheme, and the persisting menace of quacks in the Health industry.

In his opening remarks, the Permanent Secretary Dr. Iwara I. Iwara expressed appreciation to the group and promised them an open door policy at the Ministry. In his words; ‘I extended invitation to the SA on Health because he has been a very key driver on our activities, especially those bothering on the anti-quackery taskforce and the CRS Health Insurance scheme operations’.

In his remarks, Dr. David Ushie praised the Permanent Secretary for quickly rising to the occasion of filling the leadership gap in the State Ministry after the retirement of the past Permanent Secretary.

Responding to the concerns of the Private Medical Practitioners, Dr. Ushie on his part gave account of the friendly relationship between the body and the State Health Insurance Agency, assuring them of the huge business opportunities that lie ahead for them in the scheme which has come to stay.

‘The readiness of the Government team to meet with your group to further our relationship regarding the insurance is not in doubt. You recall that we met with you at the CRSHIA building early in the year. After the deliberations at the said meeting, you promised to get back to your Congress and give us feedback. On the government side, we have since been awaiting your feedback as the ball is still in your own court’. Dr. Ushie added.

On the appeal by the Association for a more favourable criteria for their participation in the Scheme, Dr Ushie assured that the private sector is key to the operations of the scheme as shown by government’s involvement of the three Third Party Administrstors (TPAs), sterling bank, and the ICT provider (RX Health).

‘We have considered your appeals and have made the inclusion criteria favourable for your members and their facilities, taking the NHIA along as the key regulator of the various process. Based on both the revised federal law of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) and the State law on CRSHIA, you are required to participate as service providers to the scheme. The laws also require that you enroll all your Staff in the scheme as beneficiaries of the services’.

On this note, His Excellency, Sen Prof Ben Ayade believes that your involvement brings in the needed efficiency based on your wealth of industry experience which is critical for the desired improvement in the quality of care’.

On the issue of protecting your investments against quacks, you will recall that the immediate past Honorable Commissioner for Health and now the APC National Women Leader, Dr. Betta Edu, did so much by inaugurating the State Taskforce which I still Chair. The task is to drive away the quacks and allow you a safe economic environment to practice your profession and recoup your investment. Government is continuing this action as a guarantee for a competitive industry where quality is the focus’, Dr Ushie concluded.

Summarizing the deliberations, the Permanent Secretary Dr. Iwara I. Iwara outlined the areas of corporations between the body and the State Ministry to include, timely reporting of clinic diagnosis to the Ministry, confidential reporting of quacks and their activities to the taskforce, continuous interactions by way of meetings, and efforts at self regulations by ensuring that your members and their personnel get the retraining and annual certifications that they need on a timely manner.

Dr. Iwara Iwara went further to address a key concern about the Association’s members. In his words; ‘Our CRS data reporting at the national office continues to give us some embarrassment because some of your colleagues do not cooperate with our personnel to gather monthly data from their clinics. These acts frustrate our decision-making efforts in health planning. I appeal that you talk to your members and encourage them to corporate with our field officers to enable us serve you better in regulating the industry activities’.

Responding, the Association’s President assured that the local Government authority personnel who usually come for the data should be encouraged to share same with the Ministry once available.

Other dignitaries at the parley includes; Dr. Pauline Obute the State’s Director of Nursing services, Dr. Itam Essien the Director of Medical & Dental Services, Mr. Casmir Ugbong Director, Planning, Research & Statistics, and Barr John Odu Director of Administration, all of the State Ministry of Health. While Dr Aya visited in company of his colleagues consisting of many medical Elders and entrepreneurs of health in the State.


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