21 March 2018

Kenya: 1.3 Million Elderly to Receive Health Insurance Cover

The government will now enrol all the 1.3 million people above the age of 70 years in the National Health Insurance Programme, Deputy President William Ruto said today.

Speaking at the Kenya School of Monetary Studies when he officially opened the second National Social Protection Conference, Mr Ruto said the step is in line with the government's aim of achieving universal health coverage.

"The government will give them free National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) cover to enable them to access medication," he said.

He asked Parliament to prioritise legislation aimed at improving the lives of the poor and vulnerable.


The theme for this year's conference is "Scaling up investment in social protection: A contribution to the delivery of Kenya's Vision 2030 and the achievement of the SDGs".

Mr Ruto said that an additional 530,000 people above 70 years will start receiving cash by month's end.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection says that only elderly people who do not receive pension are eligible for the cash transfer programme.

The Principal Secretary for Social Protection, Pensions and Senior Citizens, Ms Susan Mochache, said the Ministry is verifying details of the additional people to ensure that they qualify before the funds are released.

"We have recruited four banks -- Kenya Commercial Bank, Equity Bank, Cooperative Bank and Post Bank -- to help the ministry pay the funds to the elderly persons," she said.


Mr Ruto asked the Ministry to ensure that the payments are timely, and to avoid delays reported in the past.

"We still have a huge population that is not captured in our programme. Therefore, we need to source for more funds to enable us to capture more vulnerable persons," Mr Ruto said.

He added that the government will in future consider enacting legislation to ensure that employers contribute towards healthcare of the vulnerable.

Meanwhile, Labour Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yattani said the ministry is developing a social protection investment plan that will promote social justice in the country.

It will also ensure youth benefit from internship programmes and apprenticeships.


Nation Journalists Feted at Merck Foundation Media Awards

NTV's Namukabo Werungah, Doreen Magak, Antony Wabwoba and former station head Pamela Asigi were among the big winners at… Read more »

See What Everyone is Watching

Copyright © 2018 The Nation. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.