Influence of biomedical sciences on National Health Insurance scheme in Ghana
AbstractHealth insurance becomes a viable alternative for financing health care amidst the high cost of health care. This study, conducted in 1997, uses a valuation method to assess the willingness of individuals from the working sector in Accra, Ghana, to join and pay premium for a proposed National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). Over 97% of the respondents agreed to join the scheme and 62.8% were willing to contribute 2% of their income as premium. Respondents were mostly aged 30 – 50 years and 68% in the formal sector with 77% having monthly incomes ranging from .100,000 to .500,000 ($1=.2,400). Only 23.6% had their health care expenditure financed by their employers. Most, 83%, indicated they visited hospitals more regularly than laboratories and a 14.5% of the irregular hospital visitors admitted spending over .100,000 per year on self-medication. Respondents revealed they spent on the average .100,000 and .50,000 per year for hospital and laboratory services respectively. The estimated individual health expenditure by biomedical methods was nearly .10,000 per month. Estimating individual health expenditure is necessary to set meaningful premiums and biomedical science as laboratory services provided could be a useful tool for such a purpose.
[Afr. J. Health Sci. 2002: 9:51-60 ]