The Community Health Fund (CHF), a subsidiary division of the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), is campaigning for fishermen and peasants across the country to join the newly introduced health insurance fund to help them get free medical treatment.
Joyce Sumbwe, Health Fund Manager of CHF, which operates on behalf of the NHIF in the country, made the call in an exclusive interview with The Guardian on the sidelines of a training seminar organised recently by the fund as part of their sensitisation programme.
She said peasants and many other groups who toil for daily bread compose the majority of the people in the informal sector who are the most marginalised hence the need for them to join the programe as they cannot afford to pay huge expenses of medical treatment.
CHF was established to improve the health service delivery to people under the informal sector to get free medical treatment through their programme known in Kiswahili acronym ‘TIKA’ meaning ‘TIBA KWA KADI’ literally meaning to get medical treatment through special cards.
Under the programme, CHF has been coordinating with district council officials such as counsellors throughout the country to help sensitise the issue.
She said the members of the fund are families who include mothers, fathers and their children below 18 years old, adding that TIKA programme is specifically for people not in the pay rolls whose contributions can be deducted from their salaries directly.
One of CHF’s tasks is to stand for and defend low income earners to ensure they join the fund so they can contribute a certain sum of money, between Tsh5,000 and Tsh20,000 per year per family. Their contribution is determined by their economic gain and depends on the negotiations reached by the two parties.