Lamu, KENYA: At least 15,444 families have already been recruited in the ongoing free National Health Insurance Fund-NHIF registration for poor and vulnerable families in Lamu by the county government.
The county government target is to recruit a total of 20,000 who will benefit from free medical care in the region.
Earlier this year, the county government annou7nced it had set aside Sh.120 million towards the drive that only targets poor and vulnerable households that can’t afford to enroll in the insurance cover by themselves.
The program was officially unveiled by Lamu governor Fahim Twaha two months ago.
Speaking in Lamu on Monday,Twaha said the drive was on course and that the remainder of the families would be recruited in the next several weeks.
He said the major objective is to eliminate the cost barrier to access of Universal Health Coverage-UHC by residents.
Twaha said the free medical scheme is also in line with President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Big Four Agenda that has Universal Health care among the major pillars.
“Our plan is to spend Sh.6000 to sponsor each of the 20,000 in the NHIF cover annually. This year we have Sh.120,000 going into the drive. The 15,444 are already free to use their medical cards and get treatment at any facility free of charge. As a leader who is aware that some of our people can’t afford medical schemes, this comes to end struggles and agony of the poor and needy in Lamu. Counties have a duty to play our part in supporting the Big Four agenda and that’s why we are doing this,” said Twaha.
Twaha said his administration was working towards the realization of the three pillars of UHC that include equity in access to health services, access to affordable healthcare and protection against financial risk for the most vulnerable through health financing.
He said that the initiative was a response to providing the assurance that the much-needed health services can be available, affordable and of good quality.