Uhuru stops new NHIF rules on only one wife, 5 children


Uhuru stops new NHIF rules on only one wife, 5 children
President Uhuru Kenyatta delivering the New Year Message on December 31, 2019. PHOTO| COURTESY

In Summary

  • The president explained that the move would pave way for further consultations following public outcry
  • Among the rules was the proposition that would lock out polygamous families and a requirement that new members wait 90 days before accesing service despite paying an upfront 1-year payment

President Uhuru Kenyatta in an address to the nation has called for the halting of a raft of new rules proposed by The National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF).

The directive also stops the NHIF from implementing the new packages that had taken effect on January 1, 2020.

The president explained that the move will pave way for further consultations following public outcry.

On January 9, in a memo sent out to all regional and branch managers, NHIF had said all married individuals would only be allowed to enlist a single spouse and a maximum of five children as beneficiaries.

In addition to other reccomendations, the new rules would require members joining the fund to wait for 90 days before accessing services or benefits.

Additionally, they would be required to make a one year upfront payment within the waiting period.

On January 12, the Central Organisation of Trade Unions (Cotu), through its deputy secretary general Benson Okwara, demanded that the regulations be reversed terming them retrogressive and punitive.

Murang’a Woman Rep Sabina Chege and Kiambu MP Jude Njomo also led legislators in rejecting the new regulations.

The MPs said the rules were illegal as they had not been approved by the parliament.

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Story By Tonny Ndungu
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