The Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, has approved the provision of free health insurance for pensioners in the state to cater to the health needs of senior citizens.

The Director-General of the Edo State Health Insurance Commission, Dr Rock Amegor, said the free health insurance service would also cover operatives of the State’s Security Vigilante Network.

Amegor, who stated this in Benin on Tuesday, said the government is committed to ensuring quality and affordable healthcare delivery, noting that the service would mitigate out-of-pocket spending for the beneficiaries and facilitate the attainment of Universal Health Coverage for all residents.

Describing the governor as a pacesetter, Amegor said the government has set out N1bn to cover the free health insurance service to the pensioners and vigilantes, among others.

He noted, “We want to thank the Governor of Edo State for this initiative and for being a pacesetter as Edo State is the second State in Nigeria covering for pensioners for free of charge.

“I want to use this opportunity to call on all pensioners across the 18 local government areas of Edo State to take advantage and start enrollment as soon as details of enrollment come out.”

“As part of the government’s initiative for Universal Health Coverage for citizens of the State, Edo State Government led by Governor Godwin Obaseki has decided to cover pensioners across the 18 local government areas of the State free of charge.

“This initiative has been borne out of the economic downturn as pensioners who have served us should not worry about paying out-of-pocket when they get to the health care facilities as it brings stability to the pensioners.

“The service covered is robust medical care that can take care of about 70 to 80 per cent of all medical challenges expected at one point in our lives and the services include medical, eye care and dental care amongst other care.

“We thank the Edo State Government and are urging other state governors to emulate Edo State to ensure our pensioners are covered and need not to worry about their health.”