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HomeKUPPETKuppet Want Teachers to Choose Their Insurance Providers

Kuppet Want Teachers to Choose Their Insurance Providers

Kuppet Want Teachers to Choose Their Insurance Providers

Kenya Union of Post Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) wants teachers to be allowed to choose among multiple health insurance providers instead of being limited to a single option.

Locking the teachers to AON Minet has been fraught with difficulties over the past seven years, most of which still need to be rectified despite beneficiaries’ and their families’ outcries, according to Ronald Tonui, assistant national treasurer for Kuppet.

Mr. Tonui stated that the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF), a government agency, should be chosen as an alternative to AON Minet or any other medical insurer selected through a competitive process.

“NHIF only needs to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) to provide the service to teachers across the country.

“It cannot compete with the other private insurers in a tendering process since, like TSC, it is a government body.”

During the Kuppet Kericho branch’s annual general meeting, which was held at the Farhills hotel, Mr. Tonui said that AON Minet services were hard to use because prequalified hospitals often pulled out, forcing people to pay for the services themselves.

Others were compelled to sell property, take out emergency loans, or organize fundraisers to pay for treatment.

While NHIF offers some Kenyan civil officials a comprehensive medical insurance package, the TSC has contracted with AON Minet to provide teachers with the same services.

Minet Kenya, the administrator of the teachers’ medical system under the TSC, has offered insurance for services at private and faith-based hospitals for years but has only recently begun providing coverage for public institutions, particularly those operated by county governments.

Mr. Tonui, a former Member of Parliament for Bomet Central, stated, “In the 47 counties, teachers have repeatedly raised very serious concerns over the services offered by AON Minet, which we want addressed under a new contract, and, most importantly, there should be [several] providers for the teachers to choose from.”

He states that there should be a public engagement procedure before a contract is signed on behalf of the teachers by TSC, as the service users’ concerns should be captured and addressed beforehand.

Mr. Paul Maingi (Kuppet national organizing secretary), Mr. Henry Obwocha (secretary for secondary schools), Ms. Mary Rotich (Kericho branch executive secretary), her counterpart in Narok, Mr. Charles Ngeno, and Mr. Paul Kimetto (Bomet) were among those who attended the meeting and advocated for improved medical services for teachers.

Ms. Rotich stated that there had been instances where pre-authorization for hospital treatment had taken a lengthy period. 

The insurance company should immediately fix this problem so that the teachers can trust them again.

She said that Minet Kenya needed to make sure that teachers could get medical care in all prequalified hospitals across the country without interruption right away. 

At the same time, contractual difficulties with the TSC are resolved.

Minet Kenya has absorbed more than seventy public health facilities in counties as part of a continuous expansion initiative aimed at including all referral and sub-county hospitals to serve customers throughout the country.

Recently, CEO Sammy Muthui announced in Kericho that the number of public hospitals providing teachers with medical care has increased to 370.

“Minet Kenya covers 1.2 million members, including 341,000 teachers and their dependents countrywide and we are expecting the numbers to rise in [2023],” Mr. Muthui said.

The government has vowed to hire 116,000 additional teachers over the next two years, with the first 30,000 to be hired by the TSC in January 2019.

 AON Minet Should Be Retained – KNUT

Collins Oyuu, the secretary-general of Knut, stated that the AON Minet offered teachers a better deal than the NHIF and should be preserved.

Mr. Oyuu stated at the Nyamira branch’s annual general meeting last month, “The services offered by AON Minet are superior, and it should be noted that it includes emergency air evacuation of members to referral hospitals and up to Sh2 million in the cost of treatment for complicated cases abroad.

“The services offered by AON Minet are superior and it should be noted that it includes emergency air evacuation of members to referral hospitals and up to Sh2 million in the cost of treatment for complicated cases abroad,” Mr. Oyuu said.

NHIF has seen its fair share of difficulties in providing medical care to government employees and members of the general public, with the government pressing insurer reforms.

Six hundred sixty hospitals have lately threatened to quit ties with NHIF due to alleged disparities in capitation rates and contract signing delays.

Rural Private Hospitals Association and Kenya Faith Based Health Services Consortium accused NHIF administrators of failing to issue contracts for 2022-2024 for signature.

In the past, patients and NHIF being billed simultaneously for treatments rendered have also occurred, prompting calls for the insurer to address the situation.

CEO Peter Kamunyo recently engaged in a boardroom dispute with the insurer’s chairman, Lewis Nguyai, over the cancellation of services given by 17 hospitals due to alleged fraud in the EduAfya program, which provides secondary school students with government insurance.

Dr. Kamunyo has also consistently refuted allegations that NHIF did not cover the price of treating subscribers for various illnesses when it should have.

Kuppet Want Teachers to Choose Their Insurance Providers

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