Government of Tanzania rolls out CHF Iliyoboreshwa e-payment system nationwide
In a continuation of efforts to strengthen CHF Iliyoboreshwa, simplify the payment of membership contributions, reduce costs associated with collection of the scheme’s revenue and improve management of the fund, the Government is rolling out CHF e-payment system national wide.
Speaking at a three-day workshop on the use of the CHF e-payment system that was held in Morogoro recently, the Acting Director of Health Services, Social Welfare and Nutrition Services in the Office of the President – Regional Administration and Local Government (PORALG), Rasheed Maftah, directed participants to capacitate all CHF teams at council, ward and village levels, on how to use the CHF e-payment system by 10 January 2022.
The training involved CHF Regional Coordinators, IT Officers and CHF Council teams from across the country.
Maftah further said the teams must ensure that CHF e-payment system is rolled out national wide by January 15, 2022.
“PORALG acknowledges valuable contribution by Ministry of Finance and Planning and Swiss TPH/ HPSS Project in the development of CHF e-payment system which is integrated into the Government e-Payment Gateway System System (GePG)”, said Maftah.
The GePG system is administered by the Ministry of Finance and Planning and is in accordance with the Public Finance Act (PFA) of 2001 through amendments to 2017 (Cap. 348), and Treasury Document No. 3 of 2017. The Public Finance Act requires all Accounting Officers to collect public funds through the GePG System.
The government has thus adopted the use of GePG system in the collection and management of public funds. To ensure CHF iliyoboreshwa revenue is properly managed in accordance with government financial management principles, the need to develop and implement the CHF e-payment system was inevitable.
To achieve this, PORALG in collaboration with Swiss TPH/HPSS Project decided to develop CHF e-payment system that will facilitate the collection of CHF payments through various mobile phone and bank services.
Swiss TPH/HPSS, funded by the Swiss Government through the Swiss Development and Cooperation Agency (SDC) and implemented by the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in collaboration with PORALG facilitated the three-day training for CHF Regional Coordinating Teams on the use of the CHF e-payment system.
The workshop aimed at building capacity of the Regional Coordinating teams on the use of the CHF Iliyoboreshwa e-payment system ahead of its national rollout in the next few weeks. This comes after a successful pilot exercise that was conducted in Shinyanga, Dodoma, Mwanza and Kigoma regions.
Swiss TPH/HPSS Project has been supporting innovative government health programs through the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children (MoHCDGEC) and PORALG since 2011 and is committed to continue providing technical support in various health initiatives, including CHF iliyoboreshwa.
"I’d like to thank all the participants for your contributions that will help to further improve the CHF iliyoboreshwa e-payment system and we promise to continue being at your disposal for any technical support during the rollout exercise," said Elizeus Rwezaura from Swiss TPH/HPSS Project.
The CHF is a government run pre-payment fund that was introduced in 2001 and each Council was required to establish a CHF Fund. However, an evaluation of the operation of this fund showed that its implementation was characterized by numerous challenges.
One of the priorities of the government is to ensure that all citizens have access to quality healthcare through health insurance systems, especially those in the informal sector in order to achieve the goal of universal health coverage.
It is therefore against this background that the Government embarked on huge reforms in the CHF governance, enrollment of members and benefit package.
In order to achieve this PORALG and MOHCDGEC in collaboration with Swiss TPH/HPSS Project have made various improvements by introducing CHF Iliyoboreshwa, implemented through 'Number 1 Health Fund Improvement Document' (CHF / TIKA) aimed at ensuring efficiency and effectiveness in the coordination and delivery of CHF to eventually achieve national goals.
CHF Iliyoboreshwa which currently has over one million active members is therefore a reformed and improved model of the CHF, operated by the government, as a non-profit scheme aimed at protecting citizens against high healthcare costs and is presently being implemented across all regions of mainland Tanzania.