…seeks media support for wider and effective coverage

In a bid to create more awareness and sensitisation on the Lagos State Health Scheme (LSHS), the Lagos State Health Management Agency (LASHMA) has launched ‘Ilera Eko’ campaign to achieve universal health coverage for all Lagosians.

Speaking at the media launch, on Thursday, at the Adeyemi Bero Auditorium, Alausa, Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi said the launching was to achieve a universal health coverage for Lagos residents and seek media support for ‘Ilera Eko’ campaign to integrate all forms of communication in achieving its mandate.

He said: ‘Ilera Eko’ is to assist the government in achieving the State’s agenda of providing universal health coverage for residents. ‘Ilera Eko’ is a call to action for all residents to prioritise their health and buy into the Lagos State Health Scheme (LSHS). It connotes the well-being and health of all residents of Lagos State”.

Abayomi said the promise to leave no one behind could only be achieved with effective communication activities via the social media, search engine optimisation, mobile billboards and all other means of communication.

While emphasising the role of effective communication in realising the objective of the programme, the Commissioner commended LASHMA for its efforts towards getting the message across the State, noting that it has helped to create awareness and sensitisation on the scheme.

Speaking further, Abayomi disclosed that part of the communication strategy deployed by LASHMA was the music talent hunt aimed at encouraging interested members of the public to showcase their creative skills through the composition of a theme song for the ‘Ilera Eko’ campaign.

“63 entries were scrutinised to get the most creative, melodious and well-arranged entry with Sola Soetan emerging the winner, thus becoming the pioneer Ilera Eko Ambassador”, Abayomi said.

Outlining the packages available for the scheme, the Commissioner said that an individual is required to pay N8,500 per annum, while a family of six, comprising father, mother and four children of less than 18years, is to pay N40,000 per annum. He also disclosed that N6,000 will be paid as additional amount for children below 18 years and N8,500 for additional children above 18 years.

“The fee is very affordable. It covers registration and consultation, child sickness, chronic disease, emergency care, care of women and newborn baby, admission for at least 15 days and drugs among others”, the Commissioner avowed.

According to Abayomi, a total of 714 facilities have been registered for the scheme with 142 private and 72 public facilities across the State.

Earlier, Chairman Board of LASHMA, Dr. Ade Alakija, reiterated that LASHMA is a key stakeholder in the Sanwo-Olu administration’s T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda on “Health”, saying it is the mandate of the Agency to drive the vision, through the provision of quality and affordable healthcare services to Lagos State residents, irrespective of their socio-economic factor.

The Media Campaign, Dr. Alakija said, is a strategic step towards achieving a Statewide Universal Health Coverage.

In his words, “The Lagos State Health Scheme (LSHS) is marketing under the umbrella brand of ‘ILERA EKO’, which signifies the wellbeing and health of all individuals in Lagos. It also speaks to the general aim of LASMHA to provide Universal healthcare and the brand promises to leave no one behind”.

Alakija further revealed that the increment in sensitisation and awareness is expected to meet the LSHS enrollment of one million households, which translate to approximately three million residents in the State within 18 months.

Assuring all residents, including the vulnerable and less privileged of access to quality and affordable healthcare, Alakija said the Agency is deploying various health financing initiatives including crowdfunding, donations and Lagos State Government Equity Fund for the indigent and vulnerable.

He encouraged all residents, media and other relevant stakeholders to support the efforts and commitment of the current administration towards achieving Universal Health Coverage by giving the Ilera Eko campaign a wider and effective dissemination.

In her remarks, the General Manager, LASHMA, Dr. Emmanuel Zamba, said there is need for increased sensitisation and awareness through all available channels, stressing that the goal of the Agency is to reach all Lagosians.

She said: “We have increased access to health insurance to enrollees who are unable to afford full payment, through instalment payment structure or ‘Pay-Small-Small’. We have also ensured grassroots presence for ease of registration and enrollment amongst others”.

Zamba further disclosed that for ease of registration and enrollment, the Agency has divisional offices in the five zones.

High point of the occasion, which had in attendance several members of the State Executive Council, was the media launch and presentation of a certificate to ‘Ilera Eko’ Ambassador, Mr. Sola Soetan, by State Lead, Health Systems Consult Limited, Mr. Emmanuel Sambo.

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