AS health stakeholders push for more inclusion in health insurance coverage, various non-governmental organizations and Dar es Salaam city authorities have teamed up to explore ways to improve access to health services to the city’s marginalized communities.
By June 2013, the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) was estimated to have covered a paltry 6.6 per cent of the city’s population, and that the Community Health Fund (CHF) covers another 7.3 per cent of the population based on the 2012 Census.
NHIF benefits cover spouses and up to four dependants. Organised by the Christian Social Services Commission (CSSC) and the Germany social welfare organisation-Diakonie Hamburg, the dialogue was a continuation of previous talks in 2013 which aimed at comparing experiences in Hamburg and Dar es Salaam in terms of quality and financing mechanisms.
Mr Mwita also said the dialogue would provide a better platform for the organizations to share experience with Dar authorities on finding other ways that could help extend insurance coverage to the needy and marginalized group.
CSSC Executive Director Peter Maduki said health services coordinated by the organization covers a total of 900 health facilities spanning 102 hospitals, two among them zonal referral and consultant specialized hospitals, and that 38 others were designated district hospitals, 104 health centres and 694 dispensaries.
Dar es Salaam regional Social Welfare Officer Ms Flora Masue said the city has 35 hospitals, 58 health centres, 427 dispensaries run either by government or private operators.
She said the marginalized groups that were rarely covered by health insurance include the elderly, orphans and people with disabilities.