Accra, July 27, GNA – Women in Informal Employment, Globalizing and Organizing (WIEGO), on Thursday organized a National Policy Dialogue on Occupational Health and Safety for informal workers in Accra.
The project which started in 2009 is being implemented in six countries including Brazil, Cambodia and Ghana by working with informal workers such as street vendors, waste pickers and home based workers.
The Dialogue which was on the theme: Experiences of the Informal Sector with the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), the case of the Kayayei, brought together the Ministry of Health, the National Health Insurance Authority and members of the Civil Society.
Dr Anthony Seddoh, a Consultant at the World Bank Group, said the dialogue was to provide a platform to hear directly from people in the informal sector especially the Head Porters popularly known as ‘Kayayei’.
He said the Dialogue was also to bring all stakeholders in the sector to deliberate on how to design a health system that would address the needs of the poor, vulnerable and the marginalized in the Ghanaian society.
Dr Seddoh said Ghana’s National Health Insurance Scheme was facing a major challenge of finance mobilization and called on all industry players to support the scheme.
He said the NHIS has thus far has not given adequate opportunities to the poor, vulnerable and marginalized in society to gain access to services, even though it was instituted for such people.
Mr Anthony Gingong, Deputy Director in-Charge of Operation at the NHIA, said the Ghanaian scheme though challenged is helping more and more people saying “children under five were instantly benefiting whiles those under18 and above 70 years don’t pay any premium.”
He said the NHIA registered over 10,000 people in Ghana’s Psychiatric hospitals, Leprosarium’s and Orphanages adding that “the NHIA has set up a call center for people to lodge complains on the service offered at the various health centers and hospitals.