An Assessment of Socio-Economic Effect of National Health Insurance Scheme on Quality, Accessible and Affordable Healthcare in Nigeria
Accessible, affordable and quality healthcare remain one of the daunting challenges bedeviling most health systems globally especially the sub-Saharan Africa countries including Nigeria. This has pushed government of most countries to increase the allocation of revenue to the sector in other to create health systems that meet the needs of the masses. This no doubt has occasioned more public health spending annually with little or no desired expected health outcome. To afford quality healthcare, health seekers indulged more in out-of-pocket spending which unreasonably impacts on the households’ income thereby impoverishing low income earners. As social security measure, governments of most countries introduced health insurance schemes that shared in part of health financing of individuals to ensuring accessible, affordable, quality and universal health coverage for all. In spite of the scheme, the three health needs viz; accessibility, affordability, and quality healthcare still remain inadequate. The rationale behind this study is to explore the extent to which national health insurance scheme (NHIS) of Nigeria has impacted on the health system through promotion of accessible, affordable and quality healthcare in Nigeria. To actualize the objective of the study, descriptive statistical technique using frequency, percentage, graph and chi-square test were utilized. The study concluded based on responses of the respondents that national health insurance scheme(NHIS) had significantly impacted on the health needs of the populace by promoting accessibility to healthcare, making it easy for the health seekers through the financing of health needs and promoting good health in Nigeria. On the contrary, the study discovered that majority of the populace in the informal sector are not adequately captured in the health insurance scheme therefore recommend the inclusion of informal sectors comprising of both private and self-employed into the scheme to achieving universal health coverage in Nigeria.
Keywords: Quality healthcare, Accessibility, Affordability, Health insurance Scheme.