BVI News

Don’t pay us on your own, NHI tells employees

Head of the NHI, Roy Barry

While declaring that it will not allow employees to pay their own contributions into the National Health Insurance (NHI) system, the management of the NHI today emphasized that the onus is on employers to make the necessary payments monthly.

“We have cases where employees want to come in to the NHI offices to pay. However, employees are not allowed to pay their own contributions. This is not in line with our existing policies and procedures, and it also discourages employers’ accountability,” declared Roy Barry, deputy director of the Social Security Board with responsibility for the NHI.

NHI premiums for employed persons are assessed at 7.5 percent of insurable earnings. That percentage is evenly split between the employee and employer, with each paying 3.75 percent.

According to Barry, some employees said their employers don’t make the necessary deductions from their pay, and are instead asking the employees to pay the contributions directly to NHI.

“We will not allow employees to pay for themselves because it will send the message to employers that they are not required to pay their portion, or the 3.75 percent of the employees’ wages,” Barry further said.

He quoted the Social Security (Amendment) Act 2013, which states: “Employers of persons in insurable employment…shall be required to pay contributions towards the NHI system”.

“A person who fails to pay any contribution due under this part shall be liable to pay the full cost of any medical services obtained by him or a person on whose behalf he is liable to pay such contributions.”

The NHI boss, in the meantime, said “there have been some challenges collecting from a few employers” who are generally reluctant to fulfill their legal obligation to pay up.

“To report a delinquent employer or to obtain more information on contributions, call (284) 852-7860, email, or visit the NHI office at the Social Security Board Building on Wickham’s Cay I,” Barry further said in a media release.

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