Mr Perry Nelson, the Director of Management Information System of the National Health Insurance Authority on Monday said the old identification cards of the National Health Insurance Scheme are valid and acceptable in accessing health care.
He therefore appealed to members of the scheme not to rush to obtain the new biometric cards, as they could use the old cards to access health care at all its service providers until the cards are due for renewal.
Speaking at a media briefing on the biometric membership system of the Scheme in Sunyani, Mr Nelson explained that the Authority has begun replacing the old cards with the new biometric identification cards but added that it would take about 12 months to phase out the old cards.
He said the Authority had issued more than five million of the biometric cards to members of the Scheme in Ashanti, Upper East, Upper West, Volta, Greater Accra, Eastern and Central Regions.
Mr Nelson added that, the remaining Regions would be captured by the end of the third quarter of 2015 and asked members to be patient.
He said it was not true that the scheme was collapsing, pointing out that though there were some basic challenges in its sustainability, the Authority had stepped up measures in addressing such challenges.
Mr Nelson explained that the introduction of the biometric cards was to address challenges with duplications of enrolment to ensure data integrity of the Scheme’s membership system.
It would also enable the NHIA to biometrically authenticate subscribers at health provider sites to discourage multiple claims submissions, he added.
Mr Nelson advised Ghanaians who had not still registered with the Scheme to do so to access free health care delivery.