Kenya Can Lead the Way to Universal Health Care in Africa

fda34e4e6f26cd7ae7d78e512cff8f50.jpeg - Kenya Can Lead the Way to Universal Health Care in Africa Siddharth Chatterjee is the UN Resident Coordinator to Kenya.

NAIROBI, Jan 16 2017 (IPS) - Consider this: every year, nearly one million Kenyans are pushed below the poverty line as a result of unaffordable health care expenses.

For many Kenyan families, the cost of health care is as distressing as the onset of illness and access to treatment. A majority of the population at risk can hardly afford the costs associated with basic health care and when faced with life threatening conditions, it is a double tragedy-inability to access health care and lack of resources to pay for the services.

According to the World Health Organisation, a large percentage of poor households in Kenya cannot afford health care without serious financial constraints as most are dependent on out of pocket payments to pay for services. Nearly four out of every five Kenyans have no access to medical insurance, thus a large part of the population is excluded from quality health care services.