Disabled push for rights

Wednesday January 22 2020

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Disabled football fans watching a match at the National Stadium. PHOTO | FILE 

MARIE ANNE DUSHIMIMANA
By MARIE ANNE DUSHIMIMANA
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People with disabilities continue are yet be enrolled in a medical insurance scheme, which was promised to them 10 years ago by a ministerial order.

The ministerial order determines the modalities of facilitating persons with disabilities to access medical care.

Vincent Basesayose from Mukama sector in Nyagatare District, a disabled, said he pays for health services.

“We pay for our health services like any Rwandan, except those who are under first category of Ubudehe,” he said.

Some people living with disabilities are unable to pay for community-based health insurance and they can’t even afford their prosthesis.

“We are thankful to the government because now if PWD fall under the first Ubudehe category, they get direct support monthly stipend ranging between Rwf10,000 and Rwf21,000.

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However, there are many with disabilities and they belong to other categories. We need specific assistance especially in health,” he said. Emile, head of Remera health centre, said the facility is not aware of the order.

“I think we should be given these orders and laws and be aware of their provisions in order give our patients their full rights,” he said.

A ministerial order guaranteeing health service assistance to people with disabilities was passed in 2009.

It states that persons with disabilities whose degree of disability is between 50 per cent and 100 per cent shall be the responsibility of the state to enroll them into mutual health insurance scheme while those whose degree of disability is between 30 per cent and 49 per cent shall be the responsibility of the state to offer 50 per cent contribution to mutual health insurance premiums.

In respect to contributions of persons with disability to healthcare and purchase of drugs, the care of those whose degree of disability is between 50 per cent and 100 per cent is the responsibility of the state.

The order gives states the responsibility of providing prosthetics and orthotics to persons with disabilities who fall under different categories of disabilities.

However, the state shall entirely remain responsible for the care of persons whose degree of disability is between 70 per cent and 100 per cent.

Emmanuel Ndayisaba, executive secretary of National Council of People with Disabilities said they are in talks with Ministry of Health and other relevant public institutions like Rwanda Social Security Board to see how the order can be implemented.

“The problem was that the process of classifying people with disabilities into categories based on the gravity of their disabilities was not yet done.

For now, it is over, we are seeing if anyone was left behind. However, if dialogue with these institutions get over, we will start,” he said.

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