NHIF unveils single person insurance

16Feb 2019
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
NHIF unveils single person insurance

THE National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) is set to launch a new category of membership for private individuals without dependants next month.

The NHIF Director General Bernard Konga said yesterday that the new service has been necessitated by demand from the public, especially young graduates and adults without family.

He said feedback and enquiries from members of the public showed that there are a lot of people who have no dependants and are ready to insure themselves and contribute accordingly.

The new product also solves the task of verifying authenticity of dependants insured by the principal member as some used to list non-family individuals to justify their contributions.

“We are going to launch the service next month and we believe this will increase the number of individuals with health insurance tremendously,” Konga said.

He said current products that covered family members—spouses, children and parents—proved unfriendly for people without such dependants hence a need for a one-member product.

“Young graduates without family, for instance, had to part with 1.5m/- in annual contribution to get an insurance cover. This arrangement led to a lot of complaints and calls for a new product,”

Although Konga did not divulge further details including amount of contribution for the new product, the single-member product is likely to come with pocket-friendly annual contributions.

According to the NHIF Act, employees in the public sector are obliged to register themselves and contribute to the fund a statutory amount of six percent of monthly basic salary, which is equally shared between the employer and employee.

However, after the amendment of the NHIF Act to cater for the private sector, the fund put in place a separate contribution arrangement for other groups registered by the fund.

NHIF beneficiaries include the contributing member, spouse and up to four legal dependants who include biological children or legally adopted children, parents or in-laws.

The NHIF currently serves public institutions, farmers’ health cooperative societies, retirees, staff of religious organizations,   children under the age of 18, students, private groups of entrepreneurs and private members who are employees and self-employed.