NHIF to cover free maternity programme

Tuesday October 18 2016

A nurse at Pumwani Maternity Hospital, Nairobi, checks on her patient after she delivered on December 26, 2015. FILE PHOTO | GERALD ANDERSON | NATION MEDIA GROUP

A nurse at Pumwani Maternity Hospital in Nairobi checks on her patient after she delivered on December 26, 2015. FILE PHOTO | GERALD ANDERSON | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By EUNICE KILONZO
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Free maternity will now be covered under the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) and will target pregnant mothers from low-income backgrounds.

The nearly Sh4 billion programme, to be launched Tuesday morning by President Uhuru Kenyatta in Nairobi, guarantees expectant mothers at least four antenatal check-ups, delivery (normal and caesarean section) and postnatal check-ups, and immunisations for their children.

This will cost the government Sh6,000 per woman and will be loaded onto the NHIF card to be redeemed at a health facility.

When the free maternity programme began in 2013, the national government was supposed to reimburse counties for every delivery and other services offered at the time but counties reported delayed reimbursements.