Nairobi, Kenya -
, 2023 - Kenya hosted the National Health Financing Dialogue, cementing its position as a leader in sustainable healthcare financing in Africa. The event, following the AU Africa Leadership Meeting (ALM) Declaration of 2019, marked a significant milestone in addressing critical issues related to healthcare financing and shaping the future of the healthcare sector.
During the high-level dialogue, opened by Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi on behalf of President William Ruto, the Cabinet Secretary for Health Nakhumicha S. Wafula emphasized the government's unwavering commitment to placing the Kenyan healthcare system on a sustainable financing pathway. She highlighted the remarkable increase in budgetary allocation to health, showcasing the government's dedication to prioritizing healthcare as a key national agenda.
One notable achievement discussed at the dialogue was the steady rise in health budgets by county governments. Over the years, there has been a substantial increase from 13.5% to 28.2% between 2013 and 2022, reflecting the counties' commitment to supporting healthcare initiatives.
In addition to budgetary measures, CS Nakhumicha highlighted strategic initiatives aimed at resource mobilization and cost reduction. The focus on promoting local manufacturing of strategic healthcare commodities and leveraging robust ICT infrastructure demonstrates Kenya's innovative approach to driving efficiency gains and maximizing resources.
The dialogue brought together dignitaries, including Ministry of Health Principal Secretaries Kimtai Harry and Mary Muthoni Muriuki as well as Council of Governors (COG) Chairperson Anne Waiguru, among others. Their presence underlined the collective commitment to achieving comprehensive and sustainable healthcare financing.
Kenya's primary healthcare model, known as Afya Bora Mashinani, emerged as a shining example during the dialogue. This model places a strong emphasis on prevention as a resource mobilization tool, aiming to shift from reactive measures to proactive strategies. The transformative approach is estimated to yield an impressive return on investment of 16 dollars for every dollar invested in health.
The National Health Financing Dialogue served as a platform to discuss the way forward, with a focus on legal reforms critical to developing a resilient health system. The government's health legislative agenda aims to create an enabling environment for sustainable financing, encompassing the rollout of primary healthcare initiatives, social health insurance, and enhanced efficiency through ICT integration.
As Kenya forges ahead on its healthcare financing journey, President Ruto's visionary leadership continues to drive transformative change in the healthcare landscape. The National Health Financing Dialogue reinforces Kenya's commitment to achieving comprehensive, accessible, and sustainable healthcare for all.