The cost of not having Insurance in Kenya

Written by
  • 3 months ago
  • Posted: August 28, 2018 at 5:04 pm

Two years ago, I had an incident that clearly illustrated to me why every individual need to have an insurance. From nowhere I started taking a lot of water and continuously running to the washrooms to drain it. I called one of my doctor friends, and he suggested that I go to the nearest chemist and check my blood sugar level. Being near the hospital at the time, I decided to check in and do proper medical check-up. At the time my medical insurance had expired on the previous month and I was debating whether to renew it.

At the hospital, the doctor could not see me before paying the consultation fee in cash as well as the cost required for the other treatment. Fortunately, I was able to raise the money to move the treatment process forward. This is important because of what happened next. When the doctor measured my blood sugar level, they rushed me to the theatre and I was admitted immediately. According to the doctor my sugar level was 32, while the normal level should be between 4 and 8. Basically mine was almost 5 times where it should be. The doctor believed that if had stayed out for a few hours, my vital organs like kidney could have failed completely. The doctor comment about the timing really shocked me, because I spent a bit of time in hospital waiting while trying to raise money before hand to pay for my treatment. And in a way he was saying that my organs could have failed right there if I did not get the money in good time.

From there, I promised that whatever the case going forward, I must insure that I renew my insurance in good time. Talking of which last week I shared a video on twitter about a lady talking about Minet teachers insurance scheme. I friend of mine who is a teacher but still new on the profession saw the post and asked me one pointed question. And that is the reason why I decided to do this post today.

 

The following was the questions my friend asked:

What if I have the insurance but I do not get sick, is it better if I had used that money for something else?

I thought that was a very good question, given the fact that insurance cover is very expensive for most Kenyans. While looking to answer that question, I found out that, on average the cost of basic insurance cover is around Ksh. 35,000 per year.  In reality, that is very expensive by most standards, given the fact that you have to pay it at once. But my answer was simple, the cost of unexpected visit to hospital can cost thousands of Kenyan shillings, which is way more than the amount one would spend on the insurance cover. Practically in Kenya, every day you would see people raising money to send relatives or friends to hospital, because the bills have gotten out of hand. When you look at it from far, one might think that, it is something that cannot happen to them but based on my experience, I would say do not take that chance. I came to the realization that the life we are living is like a flower, you can be very fine today and the following day you are going.  And yes having health insurance is a huge financial burden but the cost of not having it in case of a problem is out of hand.

Planning to work on more posts about this issue going forward after doing more research. But the extension of the above question was about what Minet brings to the table for teachers in terms of benefits. I did a summary of the areas covered

  • Inpatient Services
  • Outpatient Services
  • Maternity Services
  • Dental Services
  • Optical Services. This benefit caters for expenses related to eye treatment. This includes but is not limited to the cost of Lenses and Spectacle frames
  • Evacuation
  • Chronic Disease Management . Chronic diseases covered include but not limited to: cancer, hypertension, asthma, diabetes, pepticulcer diseases, arthritis, cardiac failure, epilepsy, chronic renal disease, schizophrenia, bronchiectasis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, thyroid
What is your opinion on the topic?
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