Healthcare in the Caribbean

British Virgin Islands Moves Forward on National Health Insurance Plan

By: Caribbean Journal Staff - December 3, 2012

Above: the BVI

By the Caribbean Journal staff

The government of the British Virgin Islands says it is moving forward with plans to introduce National Health Insurance in the territory.

The government has begun a series of consultations and dialogue with the public, media, health practitioners and others to discuss the goals and objectives of the plan, which would provide all residents with access to healthcare services.

“It is important that we educate and get feedback from our staff, as they play a crucial role in strengthening our health care system,” said Petrona Davies, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Health and Social Development. “It is vital that they be kept abreast of what the NHI is, what it means for them, their families and ultimately the territory.”

In his budget address last month, BVI Premier Dr Orlando Smith said a critical component of the NHI strategy would be to restructuring the health financing system to provide “equitable coverage for all the people of the Virgin Islands.”

Once it is implemented, the NHI plan will be operated by BVI’s Social Security Board and be funded through a combination of sources, including government allocations, employer and beneficiary contributions, co-payments, surcharges and interest earned on NHI Fund reserves.

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