Premier Andrew Fahie has disclosed that the National Health Insurance (NHI) portfolio will once again be reassigned to the Ministry of Natural Resources, Labour & Immigration.
NHI was first reassigned to that Ministry back in 2020 to allow the Ministry of Health & Social Development, which is overseen by Carvin Malone, to increase its focus on healthcare during the COVID
As a result of the extended reassignment, the Labour Ministry — led by Vincent Wheatley — is receiving the largest share of the territory’s recurrent allocations — some $51.2 million or 14.3 percent of the budgetary allocations.
According to Premier Andrew Fahie
, the reassignment of the NHI to the Labour Ministry is part of his government’s “streamlining of systems”.
said his administration was previously pumping more than $40 million per year into the NHI scheme, which he argued will bankrupt the government if the programme continues in its current form.
He had also advocated for a reduction of the dependency that he said most local healthcare providers have on the NHI.
, in the meantime, said the allocation to the Ministry of Health & Social Development in the 2022 budget is $34.2 million or 9.57 percent of the recurrent budget.
The leader of government’s business said the Health Ministry has had a “lion share” of challenges during 2021, as they did in 2020.
said this was due in part to the ever-changing dynamics of having to anticipate, plan, prepare and respond to the many issues of COVID