The government will soon institute public hearings for the National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme which will pave way for the promulgation of a law to enforce the policy which seeks to ensure that the informal sector and farmers are covered on matters to do with health insurance.

The small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which employs the bulk of the workforce in the country have proved to be a central industry in the country with Zimstat statistics pointing out that the sector contributes about 60 percent of the country’s gross domestic product and government through the National Social Security Agency (NSSA) has moved in to assist the sector by setting up a NHI scheme.

The scheme will see farmers and SMEs coming up with a payment model which suits them if proposals by the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare get a buy in from Zimbabweans during public consultations to be held soon, says the Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Cde Prisca Mupfumira.

“I am happy to say the cabinet has given us the nod to set up this scheme. We are looking at ways that are practical for our farmers and the informal sector to benefit on the scheme that will be administered by NSSA. We are looking at giving enough room for any payment method like a farmer might use bags of maize as method of payment,” said Cde Mupfumira.

Meanwhile, Cde Mupfumira told journalists that her ministry has started to assist all NSSA contributors with funeral assistance beginning of last month.

“We have realised that the most difficult time for our contributors is covering for funeral expenses hence the idea to chip in. As of April we are giving members a coffin on top of the US$300 that we used to disburse. In case one has a policy of their own, we give such a member US$500. We want to make the life of our members better,” Cde Mupfumira added.

The government of Zimbabwe continues to make deliberate efforts to make the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans better in line with the targets of the country’s blue print policy, ZIM ASSET.