The National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) in collaboration with the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) are working out modalities to ensure that legal practitioners across the country enjoy unqualified access to medical attention.
The proposed health insurance package would help reduce incidences of out-of-pocket expenditure for lawyers in Nigeria.
This was contained in a statement by the Head of Media and Public Relations Division, Emmanuel Ononokpono on Wednesday in Abuja.
According to the Statement, the plan was agreed upon after a meeting between the Executive Secretary of NHIS, Mohammed Sambo and a 3-member delegation of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) led by its President, Olumide Apata in Abuja.
The Statement reads in part: “The NBA already had life insurance policy whereby relations received specified sum of money at the death of members, there was the need for health insurance to ensure good quality of life for members of the association.
“There is necessity for lawyers to have health insurance due to the stressful nature of their work and I had made health insurance a campaign promise.
“If I did not have medical insurance, I would have paid so much for my healthcare when I was in dire need,” the statement quoted his as saying,” Apata remarked.
Speaking against the backdrop of the significance of number as a factor for coverage of groups, he stated that the association had about 100,000 members nationwide which he considered significant to warrant healthcare coverage.
In his response, Sambo underscored the imperatives of working together, adding that partnership with the association held prospects of going beyond enrolment of lawyers to members of the association serving as opinion molders for the scheme.
The health insurance boss, however, expressed optimism that steps taken by the NBA would inspire other professional bodies to consider similar initiative, just as he disclosed that a Committee has been raised to liaise with the legal body to speed up the process.
He further observed that the e-NHIS platform recently approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) would put the Scheme’s business processes on the cutting edge of technology when it comes on stream.
In addition, he said the scheme was in cooperation with international partners to build capacity of staff of Scheme.