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Health Insurance Plan

Lagos to Enrol Six Million Vulnerable Residents in Health Insurance

The Lagos State Health Management Agency has called for financial support and partnerships from organisations and philanthropists to achieve its set target of enrolling six million vulnerable residents in the state health insurance scheme under its Eko Social Heath Alliance known popularly as EKOSHA.

Permanent Secretary, LASHMA, Dr. Emmanuella Zamba, made the appeal during a fundraising event organised by the agency to reduce the burden of the cost of healthcare on vulnerable residents and make services accessible to them.

She said no fewer than 923,000 residents have been enrolled in the state health insurance scheme known as Ilera-Eko since its inception.

Zamba explained that the objective of the fundraising, which is a continuous exercise, was to ensure that all vulnerable residents of the state have access to quality and affordable healthcare irrespective of social and financial status.

Zamba said, “EKOSHA is the resource mobilisation arm of LASHMA designed to raise additional funds to provide coverage for equitable access to quality healthcare services at affordable rates for vulnerable Lagos residents.

“The objective is to mobilise adequate funding through a strategic alliance with suitable private financial institutions, road safety corps and population leveraging a crowd funding financing model to provide additional funding options for the healthcare of at least six million vulnerable residents of the state.

“We urge individuals, faith-based organisations, telecoms and mobile network providers, development partners   and corporate bodies to apply their corporate and social responsibilities to support the paying of premiums for their healthcare coverage for the initial or targeted estimated six million most vulnerable people.”

Zamba noted that out of the 923,000 residents that have been enrolled in the state health insurance scheme, LASHMA was able to cover over 340,000 vulnerable residents using the equity fund that the governor provided as well as the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund from the Federal Government and then support from philanthropists and the public.

“From the fundraising, we are hoping to raise N200 million. We are calling on people to continuously support us. The government has set aside its funds but it can never be enough. So, all of us, let us be our brother’s keeper as we bridge the gap for a healthier Lagos”, she said.

She urged all residents to enrol in the state health insurance scheme.

In his welcome address, Chairman of LASHMA, Dr Adebayo Adedewe, said, “We have organised this EKOSHA Fundraiser event to raise additional funds through multiple sources to pay premiums for the poor who are unable to pay for themselves.

“We also want to use this medium to increase the awareness of the scheme as well as encourage more well-meaning Lagosians to come forward and support EKOSHA by adopting the ACE model to sponsor vulnerable lives towards the scheme.

Earlier in his remarks, the state’s Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi, said funds raised would serve as a lifeline for those who find themselves on the fringes of the state healthcare system.

“As we look around, let us take a moment to acknowledge the power we hold when we come together for a common cause.

“The challenges faced by the vulnerable among us may seem daunting, but our collective strength has the potential to transform lives and create a ripple effect of compassion and support.

“We aim to extend the safety net of health insurance to the vulnerable, ensuring that they can access essential medical services without the burden of financial hardship”, the commissioner said.

In his keynote address, the state governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, said the generosity of philanthropists in the state would undoubtedly make a profound impact on the lives of vulnerable children.

Sanwo-Olu, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Bimbola Salu-Hundeyin, said, “As Governor of this great state, I have witnessed firsthand the transformative power of philanthropy.

” I have seen how your contributions, no matter how big or small, have ignited hope in the lives of countless children, providing them with the essential resources they need to thrive and reach their full potential.

“Our orphanage homes are more than just shelters, they are havens of care and nurturing; they are beacons of hope, where children are empowered to dream, to learn, and to believe in themselves.

“Your support not only ensures that these children have access to necessities like food, clothing, and shelter, but it also provides them with the opportunities and emotional support they need to build a brighter future.

“I am particularly moved by the stories of resilience, creativity, and determination that emerge from our orphanages during the EKOSHA Art Clinic.

“These children, despite the challenges they have faced, have shown remarkable strength and perseverance. They are eager to learn, to explore their talents, and to contribute positively to society.”