Kenyans earning more than Ksh100,000 may soon see a spike in their contributions to the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) if the new push to review the rates sails through.
In a Gazette Notice dated Friday, October 21, the Ministry of Health headed by the outgoing CS Mutahi Kagwe invited comments from the public over the revised rates.
In the looming changes, individuals earning over Ksh100,000 will pay contributions at the rate of 1.7 per cent of their earnings instead of the flat-rate fee of 1,700.
The contributions will therefore gradually increase depending on one's pay with those making Ksh200,000 monthly salary paying Ksh3,400 while those who earn Ksh500,000 will have their contributions increased to Ksh8,500.
In other categories, individuals earning between Ksh90,000 and Ksh99,000 will pay a flat rate of Ksh1,600 while those paid between Ksh80,000 and Ksh90,000 will pay Ksh1,500.
"The Ministry of Health in consultation with the National Health Insurance Fund has developed 5 sets of proposed National Health Insurance Fund Regulations, 2022, to facilitate effective implementation of the provisions of the National Health Insurance Fund Act, 2022 Laws of Kenya. The proposed Regulations have been subjected to public participation and comments therefrom incorporated," read the notice in part.
The proposed regulations include NHIF Beneficiary Identification Regulations 2022, NHIF Member Registration Regulations 2022, NHIF Contributions Regulations 2022, NHIF Empanelment and Contracting Regulations 2022 as well as NHIF Benefits and Claims Regulations 2022.
The proposed changes under the Contributions Regulations sector also demand that employers shall remit the amount deducted as a standard contribution to the fund on or before the ninth day of the month.
President William Ruto, who seeks to boost the country's savings culture as well as health sector, threw his weight behind the proposed changes noting that he had support from Parliament.
“Our health agenda is premised on fundamental reforms in the way healthcare is financed and provided. Contributions to the National Health Insurance Fund will now be graduated and will depend on people’s income,” stated the DP.
If it sails through, NHIF will receive the much needed financial boost to raise northwards of Ksh20 billion annually.
First floated in January 2022, the proposal was highly opposed by the Federation of Kenya Employers - FKE who claimed that the review would balloon the wage bill in turn affecting job creation.
Independent contributors will also have a chance to make a Ksh500 monthly contribution in the proposed changes.