The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide health insurance cover for corps members.
The agencies signed the MoU on Tuesday in Abuja when the NYSC Director-General, Brig.-Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, visited the Executive Secretary of the NHIS, Prof. Mohammed Sambo.
In a statement signed by Mrs Adenike Adeyemi, the NYSC Director of Press and Public Relations, this development means that corps members will be included in the NHIS programme.
The NYSC director-general said that the signing of an MoU between both agencies was in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive, which stipulates that all corps members must be enrolled in the NHIS.
Ibrahim said that the scheme was thankful to the Federal Government for always making the welfare of corps members a priority.
“The signing of the MoU is in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive that all corps members must be enrolled in the NHIS programme.
“This shows that the Federal Government is always concerned about the welfare of corps members and we thank the President for his uncommon love for the scheme.
“We promise that our corps members are going to render more selfless service to the country. This is going to inspire them to do more for their fatherland.
“We thank the NHIS for this partnership and we are going to take this collaboration to the next level,” said the director-general.
Ibrahim said that the partnership with the NHIS would help to cushion the health needs of corps members nationwide.
He reiterated that the scheme was already in partnership with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to provide COVID-19 Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) kits for testing corps members in orientation camps.
“Corps members are tested for COVD-19 before admittance to the orientation camps, alongside other camp officials.
“Only those that test negative are allowed entry into the camps, while those that test positive are taken to the isolation centres by the NCDC and state health officials for treatment.”
Ibrahim said that the partnership has helped the NCDC in its COVID-19 data analysis in the country.
The Executive Secretary of the NHIS said that every Nigerian should be included in the healthcare delivery scheme of the federal government.
To make this a reality, Sambo disclosed that the NHIS was, therefore, working with the State Health Insurance Agencies to develop an initiative tagged “Health Insurance Under One Roof”.
The NHIS boss said that the initiative would enable the national and state health agencies to facilitate the provision of adequate free medicare for all Nigerians.
“The law establishing the NHIS is not mandatory, but efforts are ongoing to have a clear pathway for universal healthcare that will be mandatory for all Nigerians.
“In a bid to deepen the implementation of the rebranding agenda of the agency, the NHIS has developed a five-tenure strategic plan, among other innovations.
“The NYSC and the NHIS have worked assiduously through a joint technical team to develop a blueprint for the necessary financial provisions.
“We decided to sign an MoU so that the responsibilities of the two agencies will be spelled out to have a hitch-free implementation,” he explained.
Sambo commended the federal government for increasing corps members’ allowance, adding that the provision of free medicare will spur them into a higher level of service delivery.
He therefore urged the corps members to reciprocate the federal government’s effort by rededicating themselves to national service. (NAN)