Minister happy health tax is going to NIS to help ‘ordinary Bajans’
Minister Lt. Col Jeffrey Bostic in the Lower House on Tuesday, October 23, 2018.
The Minister of Health and Wellness wants Barbadians to understand that “the health of a nation is the wealth of a nation… and a small contribution from each and everyone towards the health will result in a significant contribution to the wealth of this nation.”
To the persons crying out at this new bitter pill being administered by way of the Health Services contribution, Minister Lt. Col. Jeffrey Bostic said, “It is not that government wants to take taxes out of the pockets of ordinary Barbadians.” He asserted that the BLP-administration has a responsibility to the people who elected them, to serve them and a part of that service is to ensure that the lone public primary care hospital – the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, provides high-quality healthcare.
Therefore he once again called on citizens to “not to see this [health tax] as an imposition but really as an investment. Each and every one of us is investing in our health, our children’s, our grandchildren’s and the health of our loved ones.”
Lauding the government for going this route “to ask Barbadians to make a contribution towards their healthcare,” he urged that the contributions will show immediate results.
And he assured, “We expect and we will deliver a higher quality of services to this country because we now have the resources to make that possible.”
Making his contribution in the Lower House during the debate on the National Insurance and Social Security (Amendment and Validation) Bill, 2018, he thanked the Minister in the Ministry of Finance Ryan Straughn who tabled the Bill.
He praised the Prime Minister for having the “foresight in allowing these contributions to not go the traditional route to the Consolidated Fund, but to go to the NIS [National Insurance Scheme] so that they can then be disbursed to the QEH to do what exactly what the contributions are intended to do, and this is very important!”
And he pledged that he will hold himself “accountable and responsible, because these contributions must now be translated into providing a higher quality of services.”
The Health Services contribution will amount to one per cent of a worker's earnings – wages or salaries.
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