The 4.05 billion shillings National Hospital Insurance Fund comprehensive medical cover that will cater for all students in public secondary schools has kicked off.
The scheme that was launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta last month is expected to pay a premium of 1,350 shillings per student for the 3 million students in public secondary schools as part of government efforts to ensure access to quality health services for its citizenry.
Education Cabinet secretary Amina Mohammed said head teachers of secondary schools have already received circulars with directions on the implementation of the fund.
Amina says even though the project is still work in progress, the negotiated comprehensive cover is unique as it only caters for the specific medical needs of students rather than the normal cover that caters for families.
To bolster implementation of the new scheme, Amina says the Ministry of Education and that of Health have ensured health facilities that serve students are upgraded to the level of NHIF accreditation.
5,314 health facilities have been accredited in the new scheme with over 8,700 secondary schools enlisted.
Students reported for the second term of 2018 academic year on Wednesday with the promise of affordable health care to all students appearing to have been actualized.
The Cabinet secretary was speaking on the side-lines of the Higher Education Loans Board breakfast meeting in Nairobi.
Addressing the meeting, Amina declared a 100% interest waiver for all HELB defaulters between Thursday and 30th June 2018.
Stakeholders at the forum expressed the need for HELB to find innovative ways of accessing funds to support the increasing number of Kenyans seeking loans.
The government has also directed all universities to immediately start using the HELB smart card in accessing funds and paying for loans in a bid to help track the funds loaned to students.