Factors Influencing the Choice of Health Care Financing by Informal Sector Employees
While universal health coverage has been the goal of health care reformers, and governments for many years, the specifics of how to equitably finance healthcare for the people in the informal sector, who are the majority, are not well understood. Expanding access to health care for the informal sector and the poor is an important objective of the country. This paper contributes to analyzing and understanding the factors that influence the individual choice of health care financing method by informal sector employees in Nairobi’s Gikomba area. By understanding these factors, it would be possible to design the best financing model that will serve the informal sector, without compromising on the quality of health care received. It was found that demographic factors like age, education and income were the main factors that influenced the choice of health care financing. The correlations for income, education and age were positive and all statistically significant. Informal sector workers who were older, those who had secondary education and above and those with higher incomes had a higher likelihood of being insured. It was also found that the most critical barrier to health insurance enrolment was the lack of knowledge by informal sector workers about the options available and the procedures. Inability to pay is a critical factor for some, but people were, in principle, interested in health insurance, and thus willing to pay for it.