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ISLAMABAD, Sep 20 (APP): Chairperson Benazir Incom Support Programme (BISP) Marvi Memon and members of the Asian Debelopment Bank (ADB) delegation visited National Health Insurance Service (NHIS) in Gangwondo province of South Korea.

The NHIS is a leading social protection agency of South Korea. During the visit, Chairperson BISP discussed the possibility of MoU between BISP, Health Ministry of Pakistan and NHIS of Korea for developing big data for future growth of PM National Health Insurance Scheme (PMNHIS) with Head of Research at NHIS Hongkyub Lee and Director International Relations Park Choon Sik.

Korea has developed world’s best health Information Communications Technology (ICT) systems, the press release said.

Through the concepts of health banks, infectious diseases alarm service and regional customized health service, Korea has helped to improve the health of its population in every corner of the country.

In Korea, the NHIS has ID number for each citizen and NHIS contributes to their premium from beginning of life cycle. Out of this data, samples are collected and research is carried out periodically for better health policies.

On the occasion, Chairperson BISP said that data management is a key to managing prosperous healthy society.

Pakistan may learn from the Korean experience from 1963 to 2016 and improve the health of its population through successful transfer of technology and experience within a year.

BISP data having the variables of health, education, gender, location, urban-rural divide and other variables can also be utilized for research purposes and devising appropriate health policies for every region of the country.

As BISP has a loan component with ADB to utilize funds for PM Health Insurance Scheme and ADB has option of technical grant to allow Korean NHIS to assist countries like Pakistan, the collaboration between BISP, NHIS and PMNHIS under the umbrella of ADB may help to achieve this goal.

BISP, being the custodian of National Socio-Economic Registry (NSER), has the union council wise multidimensional data of 27 million households.

The BISP provided the data to Ministry of Health and on the basis of this data Ministry of Health identified the eligible persons for its health insurance card.

Many other federal and provincial social protection initiatives in the country are benefitting from the BISP data.

Chairperson BISP said that investing in ICT and Pakistan’s NSER will help to improve health services of Pakistan the maximum knowledge about the health of poor and middle class through data mining of BISP NSER would help policy makers to improve the potential of the population and Pakistan may enter into 18 leading economies of world faster.

BISP’s new poverty survey has included the variables of health consisting of chronic diseases and disability.

This will help to generate more comprehensive and versatile data giving deep insight into the health related issues and opportunities.

Chairperson BISP added that this MoU between BISP, Ministry of Health and NHIS at this moment when Pakistan has such a rich data of population, will help to realize the dream of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif regarding health of Pakistani people.