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Government of Jamaica

NHF TO DISCONTINUE COLLECTION OF APPLICATION FORMS THROUGH THE ECECTORAL OFFICE

NHF TO DISCONTINUE COLLECTION OF APPLICATION FORMS THROUGH THE ECECTORAL OFFICE

In a move to simplify and improve the enrollment of applicants for National Health Fund (NHF) Individual Benefits, the NHF and the Regional Health Authorities have established NHF Enrollment Desks at all Hospitals and Health Centres islandwide. The NHF will therefore discontinue the use of the Electoral Office of Jamaica, EOJfor the enrollment of NHF beneficiaries, effective August 1, 2005.

Mr. Rae Barrett, Chief Executive Officer for the NHF says the EOJ was used initially because of its network of offices across the island and moreso its experience in the process of registering residents for various programmes. However NHF clients have found it time consuming to attend the EOJ Offices, and have showed a preference for enrollment at hospitals and health centres.

The first NHF Enrollment Desk was introduced at the Cornwall Regional Hospital in February of this year on an experimental basis for a six months pilot period and is now being upgraded to a full NHF Customer Service Desk. Due to its performance the service was introduced other hospitals and health centres in June, ahead of the six months schedule.

Mrs. Sasha Blake, Customer Service Supervisor, NHF says there has been a significant increase in NHF enrollment since the islandwide introduction of NHF Customer Service Desks at hospitals and health centres. ?In May for example we had 1,128 applications for NHF Individual Benefits. In June this figured leaped to 4,563 and so far for July we have nearly surpassed the 5000 mark?.

NHF Customer Service Desks provide general information on the NHF, serves as a local contact point for queries and enrolls beneficiaries for both the NHF and JADEP health cards.

In addition to make it easier for clients, once the applications are processed the NHF mails out all health cards and beneficiaries are not required to attend at the Enrollment Desk or the NHF to collect their cards. The NHF is also encouraging the mailing in of application forms and have provided self addressed envelopes along with the NHF application forms, as another means of simplifying the application process.

NHF Individual Benefits provide financial assistance to purchase medication for residents of Jamaica who are living with the following chronic diseases: Arthritis; Asthma; Breast Cancer; Prostate Cancer; Diabetes ; Epilepsy; Enlarged Prostate; Major Depression; Psychosis; Glaucoma; High Cholesterol; Hypertension; Ischaemic Heart Disease; Rheumatic Heart Disease and Vascular Disease.

There are two health cards available from the NHF ? the NHF Health Card which provides a subsidy for all residents suffering from these conditions and an additional card for senior citizens the Jamaica Drug for the Elderly Programme (JADEP) health card which provides 72 prescription items free of charge for ten of these chronic diseases.

Contact: Rosemarie Lee, Public Information Officer NHF, Tel: 906-1106,

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