Advocacy Country Spotlight: Ghana

Case Study 1 of 2

Issue: When the National Health Insurance Act (NHIA) of 2012 was passed in Ghana, family planning was included as part of the health insurance benefit package. However, provision of family planning services under NHIA has yet to be implemented. An advocacy window before the 2016 general elections in Ghana provided an opportunity to secure support from parliamentarians and election candidates on the operationalization and provision of family planning services under NHIA.

Action: Through a project funded by FP2020’s Rapid Response Mechanism, Muslim Family Counseling Services (MFCS) assisted in drafting a legal instrument endorsed by the Presidential Committee. If passed, the legal instrument would assist in the provision of clinical family planning methods as part of the benefits package included in the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). The project also provided informational write-ups, situation briefs, and policy briefs on the legal instrument and national health insurance law to members of parliament and parliamentary staff. MFCS organized a two-day training and information sharing meeting with 30 members of the parliamentary committee on health and subsidiary legislation and other parliamentary staff on the development of the legal instrument. A platform dubbed FP Advocates Ghana was created by the project to further advocate for more FP support by policymakers. 

Impact: MFCS successfully drafted and initiated the ratification process for a legislative instrument that gives backing to the provision of family planning services under the NHIA. More than 880,000 women of reproductive age who are NHIS subscribers stand to benefit from access to clinical family planning methods under the NHIS.

Case Study 2 of 2

Issue: Ghana did not have a legislative instrument to operationalize the National Health Insurance Act of 2012, which the provision of family planning services for NHIS subscribers. Efforts by CSOs led by MFCS resulted in a draft legislative instrument awaiting cabinet approval. Further support is needed to ensure that it is approved by the Cabinet, Parliament, and President.

Action: MFCS engaged in advocacy efforts targeting government actors, traditional and faith leaders, media, and grassroots organizations to expedite the ratification of the newly developed legislative instrument.

Impact: Because of this project, clinical methods of family planning were fully added to the benefit package of Ghana’s NHIS. This ensures that more than 800,000 women are eligible to benefit from free clinical family planning services, increasing the country’s modern contraceptive prevalence rate and furthering progress toward the country’s FP2020 commitments.