Health Insurance Subsidy Program (HISP)

A vast majority of Kenyans, especially those in the lower income quintiles, are not covered by insurance mechanisms. Hence, they are forced to pay out-of-pocket for health services at the time of use, and bare the full costs of the service individually. These direct payments discourage people from using health services. The resulting ill-health as well as the costs associated with treating illnesses systemically pushes people into poverty. To address this challenge, the Government of Kenya (GoK) and development partners are actively discussing and designing the roadmap that Kenya will follow to achieve universal health coverage whereby all Kenyans have access to affordable health care. 

The Health Insurance Subsidy Program (HISP) is a GoK flagship project under Vision 2030 which is being implemented by NHIF and financed by the World Bank.  Under this program, the government seeks to provide universal quality healthcare that is accessible, affordable and sustainable through effective and efficient utilization of resources to vulnerable segments of the population in Kenya.

NHIF plans to pilot HISP among 3,500 households for two years beginning 1st September 2014. This is approximately 141,000 of the poorest of the poor or approximately 500 households in each of the 47 counties. The program will then scale up over time to reach an estimated 9 million poor by 2020.


Overall HISP Objectives

The key objective of the HISP pilot is to test the effect of provision of a health insurance subsidy to the poor.


Who Is Eligible For HISP

The initial beneficiaries of HISP will be households registered under the Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) Cash Transfer Program (CTP) operated by the Social Protection Secretariat (SPS) within the Ministry of Labour, Social Security and Services.

The program will initially target 500 beneficiaries in each county.  Each of the households will be given a comprehensive insurance plan that covers both inpatient and outpatient services at no charge to the household.

The cost of the program will be covered by the Kenya government.


The Role Of PS Kenya with HISP

Through the Africa Health Markets for Equity (AHME) program, PS Kenya has received funding from The Gates Foundation and UKAID to support NHIF in the roll out of the HISP pilot by recruiting, training and leveraging Community Health Workers (CHWs) who will be used to educate beneficiaries on HISP and encourage them to register and utilize the scheme.

PS Kenya will support HISP activities in 18 counties: Kisumu, Siaya, Homabay, Bungoma, Kakamega, Vihiga, Kisii, Uasin gishu, Kajiado, Nyeri, Kiambu, Kirinyaga, Embu, Meru, Tharaka Nithii, Isiolo, Makueni and Kitui.

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