THE challenges facing the Mutuelle de Santé health insurance scheme are a reminder that we should not rest on our laurels as a country.
According to the new Fund managers, Rwanda Social Security Board, dwindling subscriber numbers, errors and uncoordinated management have characterised the health insurance scheme over the past few years.
This is not good news, for a country which is a role model in provision of good health care. It is important to swiftly find interventions to these pitfalls so that we don’t expose vulnerable people to situations where they won’t be able to receive affordable health care.
Using aggressive strategies to get subscribers is counterproductive and should be avoided. What is needed is explaining to citizens the importance and the benefits they stand to gain from joining the scheme.
And the best way to do this is through sensitisation of people on the benefits of the scheme in order for them to feel a sense of ownership, instead of feeling like the scheme is being imposed on them.
Any changes to the scheme should be done after wide consultation of the key stake holders including the subscribers who comprise the majority of ordinary Rwandans.
Leaders at all levels should be at the forefront of this sensitisation drive, and as part of the drive, they should encourage the masses to set up income generating activities so they can have a sustainable source of income to subscribe to the scheme.
Remember, the Mutuelle de Santé insurance scheme covers the majority of Rwandans, especially the poor and we don’t want this group to be left out. A health population lays a firm foundation for national development.