Health financing for universal coverage

Health financing reform in Kenya: assessing the social health insurance proposal

Discussion paper, Number 1/2006


World Health Organization

Publication details

Number of pages: 25
Publication date: 2006
Languages: English
WHO reference number: EIP/HSF/DP.06.1



Kenya has had a history of health financing policy changes since it gained independence in 1963. Recently, significant preparatory work was done on a new Social Health Insurance Law that, if accepted, would lead to universal health coverage in Kenya after a transition period. One of the key features of this proposed Law is that it ensures access to health care among the poor by granting them full social health insurance membership status.

In this paper, we assess the 'expected' performance of the Social Health Insurance Fund that would be set up if the Law was passed. We also give an overview of how the reform would be financed, and initial responses of different stakeholders to this reform.