KENYA— The Ministry of Health has initiated the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) Asset Verification Exercise, marking a significant stride towards the transition to the Social Health Authority (SHA).

Cabinet Secretary for Health, Nakhumicha S. Wafula, announced this pivotal step as she commenced efforts to identify NHIF’s assets and liabilities nationwide, emphasizing the importance of accountability and transparency during the transition phase.

This development coincides with the government’s phase-out of the NHIF program, set to conclude on July 1, 2024, when the SHA assumes responsibility.

NHIF has served Kenyans for 58 years, but the enactment of the Social Health Insurance Act in 2023, coupled with the recent publication of regulations, has paved the way for the establishment of the SHA.

This new authority encompasses three funds: the Primary Healthcare Fund (PHCF), the Social Health Insurance Fund (SHIF), and the Emergency, Chronic, and Critical Illness Fund (ECCF).

The ceremony, attended by key officials including the Principal Secretary of Medical Services, the Ag. Director General for Health, as well as members from the SHA and NHIF Boards, underscores the government’s commitment to ensuring a seamless transition process.

In her address, CS Nakhumicha S. Wafula stressed the importance of the verification process in facilitating an efficient transition without disrupting service delivery.

She assured NHIF beneficiaries that the transition should not impact their access to services, with anticipated improvements in service quality.

Nakhumicha urged health service providers and facilities to continue serving Kenyans diligently, noting that the Ministry has begun settling outstanding NHIF invoices with funds allocated by the Treasury.

The asset verification aims to catalog NHIF’s assets and liabilities across its various locations before their transfer to the SHA, ensuring a meticulous and transparent transition process.

CS Nakhumicha reaffirmed the government’s commitment to operationalize the SHA by July 1st, with household registration slated to commence in May.

She went on to inform citizens that NHIF services will remain uninterrupted during the transition.

She commended the Ministry of Health for promptly addressing outstanding NHIF payments, emphasizing the importance of health financing in realizing Universal Health Coverage (UHC), and highlighting the Social Health Insurance Act and the establishment of SHA funds as crucial steps toward achieving this objective.

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