The federal government has endorsed a new unified Healthcare and Life Insurance Scheme for the movie and creative industry as efforts to enhance access to affordable health services by its members and avoid preventable deaths to chronic illnesses.
The government's endorsement is on the heels of the call by a preferred provider of health organisation for implementation of universal health coverage requirements of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Nigeria without further delay.
Addressing the participants at the recent launch of Nolly Health Insurance, comprising Life Insurance and Pension Scheme for the practitioners in the creative industry in Lagos, the Managing Director, Nigerian Film Corporation, Dr. Chidia Maduekwe, noted that the unified insurance scheme was a bold and commendable initiative.
"On behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria, the launch of the unified health Life Insurance and Pension Scheme (LIPS) is a thing of joy and it gladdens my heart to be associated with it."
He further assured participants that "We shall compliment and back it with full faith and credit of the government under the auspices of Nigeria Film Corporation (NFC)."
According to the Lagos State's Acting Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Adebimpe Akinsola, the scheme was long overdue in view of the health challenges including Kidney and heart problems which had claimed many lives in the industry due to lack of fund for medicare.
She commended the leadership of the movie and creative industry for the laudable programme and explained that Lagos State Government had planned to establish Art Theatres in the different geographical zones of the state in order to bring the industry closer to the people.
Speaking, the Managing Director, Nigerian Guild of Actors, Mr. Fred Amata, described the initiative as the first collective decision to be taken by the operators in the creative industry to bring into fore the imperative of healthy living as a necessary condition for effective and efficient performance of creative artistes.
Therefore, Amata charged participants to take advantage of unity of purpose to ensure the success of the scheme, as it has potentials to ensure well-being of the practitioners in the industry. Meanwhile, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Pinewood Medicare, a Preferred Provider of Health Insurance, Dr. Olasimbo Davidson, tagged the initiative as historic in view of the deplorable state of the country's healthcare system.