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State steps up SHIF registration ahead of rollout in July

 

  Health CS Susan Nakhumicha. [File, Standard]

Kenyans will start paying 2.75 per cent of their gross salary to the Social Health Insurance Fund (SHIF) from July 1, under the new Social Health Authority (SHA).

Health Cabinet Secretary Susan Nakhumicha said the rollout of the new health scheme will start in the next 30 days as earlier planned.

"Every salaried Kenyan will be deducted 2.75 per cent of their gross salary," said the CS.

Nakhumicha was speaking at Amutala Stadium in Kimilili constituency during an interdenominational church service that was attended by President William Ruto on Sunday.

"By contributing to the Social Health Insurance Fund, we shall be making access to healthcare services affordable to every Kenyan," she said.

She added: "With the new regulations in place, every Kenyan shall be required to apply to the Social Health Authority for registration as a member before June 30, this year. Services under the new health scheme will be available from July 1," she added.

Nakhumicha said the exercise is being conducted ahead of the official registration of the new health scheme.

The new health scheme will repeal NHIF and begin offering services to Kenyans by July 1.

"We have made the registration so easy, one can register through the mobile phone through a USSD code, through the help of a Community Health Promoter (CHP) or just walk to a nearby health facility to get enlisted," she said.

The CS said the exercise will ensure a smooth transition from NHIF to SHA.

“Transition exercise should be seamless. The public should not realise there has been a handshake unless at a point of service delivery,” said the CS.

She assured that the Linda Mama program is still on and has not been scrapped as earlier claimed.

Linda Mama program targets expectant women and aims at reducing neonatal and maternal deaths.

It also ensures that mothers do not struggle with the burden of paying medical bills during pregnancy and childbirth and encourages them to seek the services of a skilled birth attendant.

"Linda Mama has now been made bigger. It will take care of the pregnant woman, the mother and the baby as well as the husband," said Nakhumicha.

She said the Critical Illness Emergency Fund expected to come into effect when the new health scheme is rolled out will also ensure those with chronic diseases like cancer, diabetes or hypertension are catered for. 

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