The Federal Capital Territory Administration has begun the enrollment of vulnerable pregnant women into the FCT Territory Health Insurance Scheme (FHIS).

Dolapo Fasawe, the Mandate Secretary of Health Services and Environment, speaking during the flag-off ceremony of the initiative in Abuja announced that enrolled pregnant women would receive a free safe delivery kit.

She noted that health insurance for vulnerable will provide health security for them during and after delivery and curb maternal mortality.

“It is not only during delivery that women have complications, at times it occurs after delivery. It has been documented that there are post-natal infections that these pregnant women have that they don’t treat or come back toward the point of death and it leads to death. Now the insurance scheme covers antenatal care of the pregnant woman and it covers them during delivery.

“The essence of this is to encourage pregnant women to register for health insurance, this pack ordinarily would cost about N50,000 and the normal practice before now is when you come for delivery they would list everything in here and ask you to go and buy but now we are giving it out for free once you are registered on our health insurance scheme”, she said.

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Fasawe clarified that every pregnant woman in FCT unable to afford health insurance would be registered under the vulnerable group, ensuring free access to antenatal care and the safe delivery kit. The initiative aims to eliminate financial barriers for pregnant women, addressing potential complications during and after childbirth.

Expressing delight, Mariya Mahmoud Bunkure, Minister of State for FCT, highlighted the government’s commitment to providing quality healthcare without financial strain through the FHIS. Emphasizing the importance of timely funding, Bunkure warned against delays by Health Management Organizations (HMOs) and other services to hospitals that could affect the insurance scheme.

Acknowledging the collaborative effort, Frances Adewumi, the USAID IHP FCT State Director, commended development partners for their support in realizing the sensitization campaign on health insurance. USAID IHP contributed to FCT’s healthcare through capacity building, medical equipment supply, and health system strengthening efforts, focusing on reducing maternal and child morbidity and mortality.

At the event, 500 safe delivery kits were distributed to enrolled pregnant women, with over 1500 pregnant women successfully registered.