Kenyans have been advised to take health insurance more seriously to help reduce the financial burden of seeking health services. Citizens in third-world countries like Kenya have long suffered catastrophic effects in the process of seeking health services.
This is largely due to the overreliance on out-of-pocket payments in hospitals that leaves patients and their families drained financially.
Dr. Mbiti Mwondi advises that families should consider having both NHIF and additional private insurance medical cover in order to overcome this challenge.
NHIF subscription goes for just Ksh. 500 per month covering both the beneficiary and their dependants. Private medical covers can also go for as low as between Ksh 15,000 to Ksh 40,000 per annum, an investment Dr. Mbiti believes is worth it.
The National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) has a limited and unclear benefit package that is often unreliable. As a result, you may not be covered for some services. Many hospitals also have a limit on the services they offer under the NHIF scheme due to unreliable compensations.
In addition, Dr. Mbiti advises that citizens should form a habit of visiting hospitals that are within their financial means to avoid piling up bills that they may not understand. In order to do this, he advises that one should have one or two doctor friends who can advise them on good yet affordable public, private and mission hospitals within their vicinity.
Many patients make a huge mistake in choosing hospitals whose services they either cannot afford or are very poor. He also advises that patients should listen more to their doctors’ advice on the prognosis of their conditions.
Sometimes patients with terminal stages of a disease are better off taken care of from home palliatively rather than being in the hospital. A good doctor will be candidhe remarked in one of his tweets.