Government will be introducing a Covid-19 Health Levy of 1% on VAT, Flat Rate Scheme (VFRS) and a 1% on National Health Insurance Levy (NHIL) as part of revenue measures to help the economy recover.
The Caretaker Finance Minister, Osei Kyei Mensa Bonsu who disclosed this during the 2021 Budget Statement Friday, said the levies will be used for the procurement of vaccines and establishment of 14 medical waste treatment facilities.
The Parliamentary Affairs Minister said the levy “will also assist in the construction of 33 major health projects, the recruitment of more health professionals and agenda 111.”
He said the Covid-19 pandemic has caused additional health spending that far exceeds the annual budget for health.
“To provide the requisite resources to address these challenges and fund these activities, government is proposing the introduction of a Covid-19 Health Levy of a one percentage point increase in the National Health Insurance Levy and a one percentage point increase in the VAT Flat Rate to support expenditures related to Covid-19,” he said.
The Suame MP also outlined some of the actions that are being implemented by government to address this pandemic.
He highlighted the procurement of vaccines, the first batch of 600,000 doses from the COVAX Facility which has already been delivered and an additional 17.6 million vaccine doses to be delivered by June, with more to come in the course of the year.
The Majority Leader said as of March 10, 262,335 Ghanaians have received the first dose of the vaccines.
He said government has established 14 medical waste treatment facilities across the country for safe disposal of medical waste in collaboration with the private sector.
Mr Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu said major health projects have been approved for implementation at a cost of €890 million.
According to him, to date, 14,6 million pieces of personal protective equipment produced domestically for health workers, students, teaching and non-teaching staff of tertiary and secondary educational institutions.
Agenda 111, will see to the construction of 100-bed District Hospitals in 101 Districts with no hospitals, seven Regional Hospitals for the new Regions.
This includes one for the Western Region, the construction of two new psychiatric hospitals for the Middle Belt and Northern Belt, respectively, and the rehabilitation of Effia-Nkwanta Hospital in the Western Region.
It is the latest investment in healthcare infrastructure in the country’s history and a massive vision by the Akufo-Addo led administration for Ghana’s Healthcare sector.