FREETOWN, Feb. 16 (Xinhua) -- President Ernest Bai Koroma on Friday launched the Sierra Leone Social Health Insurance Scheme to ensure universal health coverage.
In the beginning,the scheme would cover primary health care, including cholera, malaria. It would later extend to secondary health care.
To be eligible for the scheme, citizens are required to pay a minimal contribution that would give them access to affordable and quality health service in all government-owned hospitals across the country.
According to the coordinator of the scheme, Joseph Kamara, people in the informal sector would be required to pay an equivalent of 2 U.S. dollars per month, while those in the formal sector would be paying 6 percent of their monthly salaries.
He said the scheme would provide free health care for children under 12, the elderly, and persons with disabilities.
Speaking at a launching ceremony in the capital city of Freetown, president Koroma urged all citizens to own the process and to make the scheme successful and sustained.