The national hospital insurance fund (Nhif) is a statutory body which offers affordable, sustainable and accessible medical insurance services to all Kenyans.
NHIF was established in 1967 as a department within the ministry of health, by an Act of parliament. This has been reviewed over the years and it is now governed by ACT NO. 9 of 1998 - National Hospital Insurance Fund Act.
Kenyans in the informal sector contribute Ksh 500 per month for the services while those on the formal sector pay up to Ksh 1700 maximum.
Therefore, the Kenyans in the formal sector are arguably the ones running the fund contributing over 83% of NHIF's receipts according to business daily.
The fund is set to get more funding if a state sponsored bill being presented today in Parliament passes.
The bill seeks to compel employers to match employees contributions to the fund in a move that will see NHIF receive an additional Ksh 25 billion per annum.
The arrangement modeled on national social and security fund (NSSF) will see the highest contributor have the amount paid to NHIF doubled to Ksh 3400 per month.
This will be good news to the statutory body which many a times finds it difficult to cover some specialized treatment among it's clientele due to inadequate funding.
It will also be good news to employees because now the total amount insured will increase hence better services.
However, some private employers may cry foul as this move will increase the cost of doing business hence reduced profits.
This will discourage investors hence the government should approach the natter with caution after consultations with the Kenya employers especially when in the private sector.
NHIF basically caters for the bed, nursing services among others in it's inpatient and outpatient packages.
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