Fact-Checking Uhuru Kenyatta’s Final Address: Claims on NHIF Membership

When delivering his final speech at State House Nairobi on September 12, 2022, President Uhuru Kenyatta claimed that his administration registered a 400% growth in the number of Kenyans issued with National Hospital Insurance Fund cards from 4.4 million in 2013 to 17.1 million in 2022.

“Registered a 400% growth in the number of Kenyans issued with NHIF cards with 17.1 million Kenyans currently issued, compared to 4.4 million issued as at April 2013.”

Background

The National Hospital Insurance Fund is a State Parastatal established in 1966 as a department under the Ministry of Health. Currently, it is governed by NHIF Act No 9 of 1988. NHIF membership is open to Kenyans who have attained the age of 18 years.

All self-employed members are in the national scheme where they are required to pay Sh500 per month to enjoy the benefits of the package. For employed members, the NHIF deducts premiums from their salaries monthly. On September 13, 2022, President William Ruto announced that NHIF will be restructured according to the income of individual contributors. During the campaigns, President Ruto promised to lower the minimum NHIF contributions from Sh500 to sh. 300 and offer waivers to poor households.

Verification

According to the KNBS economic survey 2015 the overall National Hospital Insurance Fund membership for the year 2013/2014 stood at 4.2 million. The former president overstated the number of people with NHIF cards as at April 2013 by around 200,000.

The KNBS economic survey 2022 reports that the National Hospital Insurance Fund membership increased to over 23.4 million. Former President Kenyatta understated the current number of people with NHIF cards in his final speech.

According to the figures above the percentage growth in the number of Kenyans issued with NHIF cards is 166% and not 400% as Kenyatta claimed. This claim was also previoulsy debunked by Africa Check here.

Verdict

Claims by Former President Uhuru Kenyatta on NHIF membership are INACCURATE.

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Tracy Anne Bonareri

Tracy Bonareri is a journalist passionate about human interest and investigative pieces. A writer who hopes to change the world one word at a time.