What Will Happen During Transition From NHIF To SHIF
What Will Happen During Transition From NHIF To SHIF.
Individuals in Kenya who have already fulfilled their contributions to the now-repealed National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) can rest assured that they will not be required to make additional payments after the transition to the Social Health Insurance Fund.
The Ministry of Health sought to address concerns on Friday, reassuring the public that the transition process will not result in a duplication of payments.
Health Cabinet Secretary Susan Nakhumicha emphasized that a dedicated transition committee has been assigned the responsibility of developing a comprehensive roadmap for the seamless shift to the Social Health Authority.
During a media engagement session, attended by Social Health Authority CEO Timothy Olweny and PS Medical Services Harry Kimtai, the CS highlighted the government’s commitment to ensuring a smooth and fair transition without imposing additional financial burdens on the contributors.
“No member who has already paid NHIF should be asked to pay afresh upon registration. I know some people pay annually then it is for the transition committee and Social Health Authority to see that they convert that payment into SHA without asking the member to pay again,” Nakhumicha said.
“Those who will begin payment are those who will be due for payment; there are some who have never paid before so then they begin their payments,” she added.
Against the backdrop of concerns among Kenyans who had halted their contributions to the NHIF due to apprehensions about potential financial losses during the transition to the new authority, the latest developments aim to allay such fears.
According to the provisions of the recently enacted Social Health Act of 2023, individuals currently enrolled in the now-repealed NHIF will be required to undergo a fresh registration process with the Social Health Authority, becoming members of the newly established Social Health Insurance Fund.
The authority is mandated to remove individuals from the beneficiary list in the event of their demise.
Additionally, self-employed members failing to meet their payment obligations will face a penalty of 2 percent of their contribution amount.
For instance, a member paying the minimum of Sh300 would incur a penalty of Sh6 for a one-month default, with the cumulative penalty increasing based on the number of months in arrears.
This marks a departure from the previous NHIF penalty structure, which imposed a 10 percent penalty on the contributor’s amount.
Under the previous system, the penalty for the minimum contribution of Sh500 would amount to Sh50.
The revised penalty system aims to strike a balance between ensuring compliance and preventing an undue financial burden on contributors.