Number of NHIF members hits 6.5m

Principal contributors to the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) have hit 6.5 million mark on the back of the campaign that recruited new members from the informal sector.

The scheme, which is open to any Kenyan over the age of 18 years with a monthly income of over Sh1,000 has reached a national coverage of about 24 million beneficiaries that include the contributors dependents, according to the NHIF chief executive, Geoffrey Mwangi.

This comes amidst an increased drive to recruit more members in the informal sector. The fund had 6.1 million members last June and 5.2 million in 2015.

“We are trying to fill a gap by campaigning to get the about 12million Kenyans in the informal sector who are not registered by NHIF, with a Sh80billion opportunity,” said Mr Mwangi during NHIF’s 50-year celebration in Nairobi last week.

Last June’s membership backed with new enhanced rates enabled the fund to raise Sh33.5 billion and used Sh20.9 billion to pay hospitals for benefits and Sh5.9 billion for its expenses.

New benefits paid by NHIF include chemotherapy for cancer patient, outpatient services, Kidney transplant and MRI scan. Workers’ monthly contributions to the NHIF in April 2015 increased from Sh320 to a graduated scale of between Sh500 and Sh1,700 per month.

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