, CHUKA, Kenya, Jun 27 – More Kenyans are set to benefit from quality health care services as the Jubilee Government moves to expand the National Insurance Fund (NHIF) to cover 13 million Kenyans, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said.
The President said his administration is keen to revamp the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) in line with the Jubilee Manifesto he launched on Monday to ensure all Kenyans have access to quality health care.
He said his administration has expanded the reach of NHIF to increase the number covered from 3.8 million in 2013 to 6.8 million Kenyans by 2017 and intends to increase the number to 13 million Kenyans in the next five years.
‘We have expanded NHIF to ensure that as long as any Kenyan has an NHIF card, they can receive health care services not only in Government hospitals but also in mission and private hospitals,” President Kenyatta said.
The President spoke on Tuesday at Chuka as he wrapped up a day-long tour of the Jubilee-stronghold of Tharaka Nithi where he took his re-election campaign drive and also popularised the Jubilee Party Manifesto for the next five years.
He said all senior citizens aged 70 years and above will also have access to free treatment under the expanded NHIF package.
The pledge is part of the party’s policy on health that includes provision of a one and a half year NHIF insurance cover for all new born babies and their mothers.
President Kenyatta said families with physically challenged children will also get insured under the new scheme.
“We are expanding NHIF cover to all Kenyans above 70 years of age and also to provide insurance to families with children with disability,” President Kenyatta said, amid cheers from thousands of Jubilee supporters who turned out for the rally.
Through its Manifesto, the Jubilee Party also promises to set up 10 new referral hospitals across the country so as to ensure quality healthcare at the county level. The party also pledged to ensure that NHIF will also cater for a broader set of services.
President Kenyatta said NHIF will also be expanded to cover availability of drugs by establishing cold chains for drugs and vaccines to ensure safe and high quality drugs are available across the country.
“Our commitment to the Kenyan people is to establish at least one specialised cancer hospital in the country to reduce the financial burden and other challenges faced by patients seeking cancer treatment,” President Kenyatta said.
The President, who was accompanied by Deputy President William Ruto and local leaders, said Kenya has achieved major milestones under his Administration and seeks the support of the residents of County for the Jubilee Government to continue with its development initiatives to address the needs of the people.
Apart from the heavy investment in health in Tharaka Nithi County, the national Government has also focused on other areas to lift the lives of the residents of the county as it has done across the country.
-President Kenyatta launched the construction project of Chuka Stadium that will be implemented by the national Government at a cost of Sh300 million.
-President Kenyatta announced the construction of a mega dam at Kibung’a that will cost Sh25 billion to address the water needs of the residents of Tharaka Nithi County. The dam is part of the 57 the Jubilee Party has earmarked for implementation as outlined in the Manifesto launched on Monday, and will have the capacity to supply enough water for domestic use and irrigation for the vast county.
– The national Government has invested more than Sh12 billion to improve the road network in the county.
The road projects are the 36 Kilometres Ciakariga-Marimanti-Gatunga being constructed at a cost of Sh1.9 billion, the 23 Kilometre Chogoria – Weru – Marima – Kiriani at a cost of Sh1 billion, the 30 Kilometre St. Mary’s – Kinoro – Chuka boys Igoji teachers and Kanyakine access roads at a cost of Sh2.3 billion, and the 23 Kilometre access road to Chuka University that is being constructed at the cost of Sh1.2 billion.
The Government has also invested Sh6.7 billion in the Keria-Kathwana road, a 32 Kilometre road that is at procurement stage and will ease the transportation of people and goods, transforming the lives of residents in the county once completed.
– President Kenyatta issued 7,137 titles including one for Tharaka Campus, with another 13,000 which are ready to be issued later. This brings the total number of titles delivered by the Jubilee Government in the last four years to more than 3 million nationally in line with the pledge made to the people of Kenya
– The President promised that the Government will continue investing in the young institution and its constituent campuses until they have all facilities and amenities that are required for smooth running.