The Managing Director, Ultimate Health Management Services Limited, Mr Lekan Ewenla, has expressed the HMO’s readiness to expand quality health insurance services to more states and organisations in the private sector.
Ewenla, also said the HMO was working together with the National Health Insurance Authority and Health Care Providers Association of Nigeria to achieve appropriate tariffs in the sector.
Ewenla spoke during an interactive session by Ultimate Health Management Services, with the National Health Insurance Authority, and NHIA-accredited health care facilities in Lagos on Friday, which was widely attended by stakeholders in the country’s health insurance sector.
When the health insurance scheme started in the country, he said Ultimate Health Management focused on the public sector because the private sector was not regulated
The managing director said, for this reason, “We decided not to be active on the private scheme because we were driving this business with integrity from the beginning; we always have our eyes on quality.”
But with the emergence of the NHIA Act, which expanded regulation to the private sector, he said, Ultimate Health Management decided to extend its quality service of many years to the private sector.
Ewenla who disclosed that the HMO was already offering its services to over 200,000 enrolees in the public sector, said it had got regulatory approval to launch about three products to boost health insurance coverage in the private sector.
He also observed the under-pricing of tariffs in the private health insurance scheme, a situation that needed to be jointly addressed by all industry stakeholders in order to achieve quality healthcare for all Nigerians.
Speaking on the essence of the session in Lagos, he said, “We have decided to use this particular outing as a springboard for us to interface regularly with the healthcare providers because they are the ones rendering services. It is important to work together to drive the health insurance.”
Deputy Director, NHIA, Aisha Abubakar, while speaking at the event, said insurance is about numbers and there is no way the insurance business can thrive without numbers.
She said, “There is an Act that has been passed into law to make health insurance mandatory for all Nigerians and having states to participate. Anything that is passed into the law must be implemented, and the NHIA implementation guideline that will implement the new NHIA is still ongoing and will be unveiled soon.
The immediate President, HCPAN, Dr Jimi Agrigbabuwo, said it was important to urgently review the tariff paid to the healthcare providers.
This article was originally published in the Punch Newspaper by Nike Popoola