Trans Nzoia launches maize for health cover initiative

A man carrying a bag of maize

The Trans Nzoia County Government has launched an innovative initiative dubbed “Gunia Moja ya Mahindi kwa Bima ya Afya ya mwaka mmoja kwa familia” (One Bag of Maize for One Year Health Insurance Cover per Household). The initiative is geared towards accelerating Universal Health Coverage (UHC) in the county.

Speaking during the launch of the program in Sikhendu on Friday, Trans Nzoia Governor George Natembeya said the initiative aims to provide health insurance coverage to more residents by encouraging them to exchange one bag of maize for a year’s worth of NHIF Super Cover.

The county has experienced a bumper harvest of maize, and the government believes this is an opportune time to leverage this resource to improve access to healthcare.

He said the initiative is aligned with the national goal of achieving UHC and the county’s commitment to providing affordable and quality healthcare to its citizens. Currently, only 16.7% of households in Trans Nzoia have health insurance coverage, leaving a significant portion of the population vulnerable to financial hardships due to illness.

Natembeya said the county government has identified several factors contributing to the low health insurance uptake, including lack of awareness, affordability concerns, and cultural practices adding that the “One Bag of Maize for One Year Health Insurance Cover” initiative seeks to address these challenges by providing a convenient and affordable option for residents to enroll in health insurance.

“The initiative will be rolled out in two phases, with the first phase covering two days per primary care network. County officials will be stationed at designated locations to collect maize and register residents for NHIF Super Cover,” opined Natembeya.

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