Health service fund bill for tabling in house of reps

A BILL to establish the Zanzibar Health Services Fund Act 2022 is set for tabling in the House of Representatives meeting which began on Tuesday, according to House Clerk, Ms Raya Issa Msellem.

The two-week meeting would see the house conducts several other activities.

“We have also coordinated a total of 170 basic questions from backbenchers to be answered by respective Ministers,” Ms Msellem explained, adding that lawmakers from Zanzibar House representing ‘Zanzibar House’ in the Union parliament will, each present a performance report.

She informed journalists that preparations for the session were complete and that respective Permanent committees of the House will present their 2022/23 report to the House.

Ms Msellem said the proposed bill to establish the Zanzibar Health Services Fund Act 2022 would be tabled by the Minister of Health, Mr Nassor Ahmed Mazrui, for the legislators to debate and approve before coming into operation after being assented to by the President and published in the Gazette.

According to the draft bill, the Act shall apply to workers in a public and private sector; workers in informal sector; foreigners living in Zanzibar where their residence exceed six months; retirees; students in colleges or institutions of higher education in Zanzibar, except for those who shall be dependents of the Fund in accordance with provisions of this Act and all residents of Zanzibar.

“Every employer shall, within thirty days after the commencement of this Act or within thirty days from the date of employing the relevant employee, submit the list of the employees to the Fund for registration,” it is stated in the bill.

It is said that the main purpose of the Bill is to establish the Zanzibar Health Services Fund to ensure the accessibility of better and sustainable health services to all members of the Fund and that the Fund will be responsible for registering members, collection of contributions from the members, accreditation of the health service providers and paying the health services provided to the members.

The benefit package for the members of the Fund shall include: Medical Consultation; Outpatient and inpatient services; Laboratory tests, radiological and other diagnostic services; medicines and medical supplies and equipment approved by the authorised bodies in Zanzibar; Surgical services and Oral and dental health services.

Ophthalmic, dermatology and ENT services; Physiotherapy and rehabilitation services; Dialysis services; Cancer treatment services; Reproductive services; Maternal and child services; Specialist medical services; Mental health services; Emergency services; Intensive care services; Assistive device services for people with disabilities and Orthotics and prosthetic services are other benefits.

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