Harare introduces health scheme

Innocent Ruwende Senior Reporter
Harare City Council is set to introduce a community based health insurance scheme, which will cover primary and maternal health care provided at city clinics, plus the cost of referral to Harare’s two central hospitals. The scheme would also cover on-site referral to doctors, basic medicines and diagnostics services.

Council recently approved the implementation of a pilot scheme in Mabvuku with possible collaboration with Harare Municipal Medical Aid Society.

According to the recent minutes of the Education, Health, Housing and Community Services and Licensing Committee all residents in the ward would be eligible and enrolment would be throughout the year.

“Premiums would be paid monthly and based on the actuarial analysis and would be at least $2,29 per member,” reads the council minutes.

“The scheme would be managed by a committee selected from residents. The scheme proposed two alternative benefit packages.

“Benefit Package A would cover primary and maternal health care provided at city clinics plus the cost of referral at two central hospitals, on site referral to doctors, basic medicines and diagnostics services.”

Benefit Package B entails cover at Primary Care Clinic plus a cash payment to cover referral care and the scheme would have co-payments, co-insurance, deductible benefit ceilings for covered services and an annual ceiling per individual member of $2 000.

The scheme planned to include other value added services like wellness clubs, while reinsurance would be provided from the pooled reserves and reimbursement of the services.

Health Services director Dr Prosper Chonzi reported that the World Bank, as part of its technical assistance to the country, and specifically the Ministry of Health and Child Care, agreed to fund a feasibility study for the introduction of prepayment scheme for health in Harare Community Based Health Insurance.

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