Determinants Of The Uptake Of National Health Insurance Among Informal Sector Workers In Kenya
The importance of Health Insurance Schemes has become an increasingly recognized factor in financing health care in low income economies as it allows individuals to access timely and high quality medical care. Unfortunately in Kenya, health insurance is skewed in favor of formal sector workers as they are mandated by law to make statutory contributions to the NHIF (National Health Insurance Fund) in proportion to their income. The aim of this study was to find out the “Determinants of the Uptake of National Health Insurance Among Informal Sector Workers in Kenya.” The study used secondary data collected from the Kenya Household Health Expenditure and Utilization Survey (KHHEUS) collected by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) in 2013. Descriptive statistics and the probit model were used in explaining the variables and in the estimation process respectively. The results were that only 14% of the informal sector workers had NHIF. Therefore most of the informal sector workers did not have NHIF cover. All the independent variables namely age, level of education, marital status, gender, household size, place of residence, behavioral factors, wealth index and belonging to an alternative community based health insurance scheme were found to be significant. A big household size, belonging to an alternative community based health insurance scheme, being male and smoking negatively affected the uptake of NHIF among informal sector workers. However a higher wealth index, being married, being educated, an increase in age and awareness positively affected the uptake of NHIF among informal sector workers.
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