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Meru County set to expand health coverage for the elderly

The County Government of Meru is set to expand National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) for the elderly in the county in order to fully cater to their health issues.

Speaking at Gatimene gardens where he met his supporters, Governor Kiraitu Murungi said the programme targeting people of 70 years and above has already kicked off and has been helpful to the beneficiaries.

“We have already issued comprehensive NHIF cover to 355 elderly persons through this program and we have the zeal to expand it and cover all the elderly people in our county,” Murungi said.

He added that his administration would set aside Sh300million for this purpose and this will be a great relief to families who sometimes sell their property in order to cater to their aging relatives.

“We know one of the main problems with the old people especially men is sicknesses where you will find them carrying drugs in their pockets all the time. Sometimes they become a burden to their children when they get sick and this is what we want to eliminate,” said Murungi.

The governor noted that this is one of the ways of ensuring economic productivity in the county bearing in mind that a sick society cannot be depended on in terms of productivity.

In this regard, he added, the county government has also created a new department of public health with its own chief officer as well as a county health board which will carry out massive public health education campaigns in all 45 wards with the help of community health workers.

The move, he added, will enhance the elimination of diseases that are mainly caused due to poor hygiene as well as other preventable causes.

By Dickson Mwiti

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