Insurance expert questions NHI pilot program

Health Minister Dr. Kenneth Darroux and DSS Director Janice Jean-Jacques Thomas at the launch of the program

Former manager at Sagicor, Randy Rodney, has raised questions concerning the newly implemented National Health Insurance Pilot program (NHI) saying without premium payments involved, it will die.

On Monday, April 3rd 2017 the government launched the pilot program for the insurance scheme. $5-million was pumped into the program to assist mothers aged 35 or younger, and children three years or younger, who need help to deal with critical medical issues.

Rodney admitted that the program is a “good one” but his main concern is that no premium payment is involved.

“Unless you have a premium that is regularly paid into a program, it is not insurance, it is Salvation Army, you can call it a fund, you can call it anything like this,” he stated on Q95 on Tuesday. “That is why insurance companies very often stand to say ‘hey if you want to run an insurance scheme, run an insurance scheme. If you want to run a scheme where you give people stuff, then that’s totally different.'”

According to Rodney, without a premium coming in from the claimants, the program itself will only last a few years, for a few people and then “it will die.”

He also raised questions over who takes on the responsibility of paying the bills if there is no premium.

“If you don’t have a premium coming from the people who are going to benefit from it, then who’s gonna pay it? When that fund is depleted, then what? How many expectant mothers can be sustained? How long? What is the max in terms of the expense?” he questioned.

Under the pilot program, beneficiaries are expected to pay 2o percent of bills on their own and the alternative of taking a loan to pay off the costs was described by Rodney as “a joke.”

“That does not exist in real insurance terms. In real insurance terms, your deductibles are paid upfront before you get your claim amount. So that in itself has not been conceptualized properly. There are professionals at the Dominica Social Security (DSS) who should give proper advice in that regard,” he said.

Rodney stated that persons involved with the facilitation of the Pilot program must be “upfront” with the information to the public.

Concerning the $5-million being placed in the program, he questioned what is going to happen when the funds are depleted.

“The idea of throwing five million dollars into a bank and deciding that it is going to be used for a certain sector can be considered something in the wind except if there is an actual report to say that ‘well we have X number of people who get pregnant, their cost is going to be X amount within a certain period of time.’ Even when you have that, the question must be asked, when that fund is depleted in terms of the claims, how does it get reimbursed?” he stated.

DNO is attempting to get a response from the DSS on the question raised. 

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  1. Iamanidiot
    April 6, 2017

    I have no problems with the program and it’s not about being Red or Blue it’s about those who are less than able in the country. My ONLY problem is Business man Tommy and his Layer wife Susan will come and apply, and they will get it even before those that really need help and no one will say anything about it.

    April 6, 2017

    haters never take a day off!

    thats a great initiative, which is why its called a pilot program.

  3. jaded
    April 5, 2017

    Rodney is correct. This does not sound like insurance but simply another government benefit. There are no premiums, , no deductible, no policy paper describing the program. And why is it only for single mothers? Aren’t there married women with young children who need financial help too? Programs like that provide a disincentive for women to get married. They will come to realize that they are better off single so that they can get the financial assistance for their young children. Too many children to unmarried couples does not make a strong society. Studies show that children are better raised in a home in which the parents are married. The government needs to rethink this program.

  4. TIna Alexander
    April 5, 2017

    Frankly this is not a Health Insurance Scheme it is a fee waiver scheme. Extending the grace already provided to those under 18 and over 60. Hopefully we are heading towards a National Health Service where all services are free at the point of delivery and are funded by taxes paid when we are well. Of course taxes will have to increase. I am in favour of a health levy on the water bill myself as not everyone pays social security or tax. However we must make sure that our services are properly resourced by engaging more nurses and ensuring that the hospital and health centres have sufficient medication and equipment.

  5. April 5, 2017

    If we want this program to work we can’t ignore the obvious, premiums should be paid. Although this is a pilot program real money is been spent not Monopoly money, so the funds have to be replenished by the benificiaries paying premiums. If this is not done we could be moving into a program based on a false premis and that would be recipe for disaster.

  6. Frank Talker
    April 5, 2017

    Red Clinic. That’s it, Rodney. Red Clinic. Meanwhile, the fathers of these children go free, and rather than beef up the PMH, Skerrit will pay the meds for the mothers, so he can get more votes.

  7. April 5, 2017

    Well all Lennox bon jeans will open their mouth and oppose the program. I still don’t get what allu doe understand about the word PILOT!

    • %
      April 5, 2017

      Stop your buffoonery. Speaking the truth about something is not the same as opposing it.

    • Long Lost Dominica
      April 5, 2017

      More like ignorants like you who go to school listen to the teacher and dont do your own research for yourself.

  8. April 5, 2017

    You do understand that it is a pilot program right? It is basically a test or project which after the trial run, will be examined and evaluated before introducing it more widely. Which is why it is targeted at mothers and children from a specific age bracket. Sometimes I wonder if one has to resort to picture diagrams for you all to understand basic data.

    • Long Lost Dominica
      April 5, 2017

      5 million to try something that you dont know will work? if it dont work 5 million goes to waste? along with millions thats already been wasted. whereas so many workable programs 5 millions can be used for… am confirming before it starts {MISSION FAIL}

  9. April 5, 2017

    Randy Rodney? Lol!

  10. lightbulb
    April 5, 2017

    that is a silly comment.
    just like in the UK, US, taxes are paid.
    If the pilot works, taxes will levied.

    That is a whole different kettle of fish.

    • Jonathan Y St Jean
      April 5, 2017

      @lightbulb,do you even understand what a pilot program is?A pilot program should run and operate like the one you intend it to be for the most part.When people get used to not paying then you turn to ask others to pay in the future,that will be a problem.This program though good in intention was not properly thought out and introduced to the public.That is typical of Skerritt and his next level.He leaves agricultural to fall into a comma whilst he tries to persue hotels​.For there to be continuity people have to pay into the system just like social security..Stop thinking that CBI will be there forever. This communist Skerritt is on the wrong side of history and national development

    • Lady J
      April 5, 2017

      Randy Shut up!!!!!!!! God read your bible and preach the word of God. I am fed up to hear you involved in political affairs rather than the church affairs. This is extremely upsetting now. Robby Tonge is a minister of Government with plenty of insurance experience and information…. don’t you think he would advise the Government. Didn’t you hear it is a pilot project. Gosh…………………………..

    • %
      April 5, 2017

      It would have served you better to stay quiet….You aare as lost as any/every other Dominican….You are not a member of the DLP REGIME. STAY QUIET.

  11. chacha
    April 5, 2017

    Amen!amen!amen!..This is no insurance programme , just another way to make poor people continue being dependent on the government and continue begging….sigh!

    All this CBI funds should be used in ways to empower people….tsk magwasah..

    I supported labor all my life by for my country sake…I really pray the CBI gravy train will not end.

  12. dayandnight vision
    April 5, 2017

    Randy Rodney should be honest enough to tell us the number of poor people who have been scammed by insurance companies including ?????????? And he want to talk????
    Come on Pastor Rod!!!!!!!!!!

    • Bruce Leeroy
      April 5, 2017

      including his church? Mr. Rodney would never be able to know how many people were scammed by insurance companies. your question makes no sense.

      • dayandnight vision
        April 5, 2017

        Bruce Leeroy who say is church I was referring to? But today is not Carnival Monday so I’m not calling name

    • April 5, 2017

      You/people were not scammed .You/people did not understand you policy

      Read the fine print. Know your policy

  13. Bruce Leeroy
    April 5, 2017

    Boy Rodney you took the words right out of my mouth. I know their supporters will not waste time to fire back with nothing but ignorance because they are the beneficiaries who are going to get their hospital fees paid free, espeically as elections on the horizon. there is no set criteria, “mothers below 35”. children below 3. Now what is to stop a parent who can afford to pay from abusing this facility? How dictates when i can access it? what is my limit if i need assistance? what kinds of cases will not be treated? Just another reason for the financial to be like a fools circus every wednesday morning. it is appaling for business people, (local and foreign) dignitaries and officials to walk through the crowd of “needy” supporters weekly. befroe 8am there is a mob just waiting. every wednesday. Mr. Rodney is correct.

  14. Da4real
    April 5, 2017

    I don’t expect anything different from randy…another supporter of Lennox who uses the pulpit to politicize his agenda.God is watching… Its time to turn to God .

    • JBaptiste
      April 5, 2017

      Why can’t you state to all where Randy Rodney is wrong. And I will add that Rodney is one of my least liked person in Dominica.

    • mamzel
      April 5, 2017

      are you that lack of understanding or have you chosen to continue to “bow your eyes and close your head?” the question and concerns are valid ones. COME ON! please let common sense prevail. Captain the ship is sinking – there is an iceberg ahead , we are on the wrong course. Yet you are fine with it. Do you have children? the next time you correct them look at their behaviour – resisting sound council. Why are you resisting sound council

    • SALAOP
      April 5, 2017

      really? In 1995 when he was giving Edison Blows he was politicizing his pulpit too? How quickly we forget??? Randy has always been known to give Government blows so what’s your point? Turn back to God alright since one man has been made into a God #WICKEDNESSINHIGHPLACESALLSTRONGHOLDSWILLBEPULLEDDOWNGODISNOTTOBEMOCKED

    • concern citizen
      April 5, 2017

      Dear Da4real,
      I don’t expect much from U either and U used the phrase God is watching . It’s time to turn to God,
      But I’m to remind U that God was present and watching on Christmas morning 2010 at St. Aromant with the fire BOMB of the 2 elderly citizens home whose home was fire bomb, and they are still looking for justice up to this day
      Proverbs chapter 15 and verse 3 says and I quote “The eyes of the LORD are in every PLACE beholding the EVIL and the GOOD”

    • %
      April 5, 2017

      Its sad that you are using Gods name in your defence of a corrupt regime….Did you listen to the blasphemy at Lindo Park when Skerrit was referred to as God by one of his slaves?. Did you condemn that…That’s one of the many reasons why this country cannot move on..The government is corrupt, and many of its supporters like stupid you,are accomplices. SOO TE WER!

      • dressing like freaks and they call it fleek
        April 6, 2017

        Dont be surprised. Everyone thinks God is on their side because everyone reads the same bible. And anyone who is against them is automatically the bad/evil/enemy. Religion boy. i tell you it has us like fools. Meanwhile God probably just letting us seal our own fate and not interfering

  15. %
    April 5, 2017

    A good programme being SPOILT by a CANNOT DO DLP…The rush is to shield their Punjab “I”, “I” “I”Man,from the MONFARED scandal…Not even their best apologist knows a hoot about this NHI…

    • De ayes have it
      April 5, 2017

      Go where eh?? Boy allu UWP people real silly eh

    • Labourite
      April 5, 2017

      @%. I want you to shut the @#$%& up until you tell me WHERE, WHEN AND HOW SKERRIT HAS TO GO. D’mitry will have children in the next 20 years. Remember he did not say Malik, because any time soon Malik may have kids. PUT THAT IN YOUR PIPE AND SMOKE IT. BON.

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