Tanzania: Over 100 Motorcyclists in Mwanza Join NHIF

OVER 100 motorcyclists in Mwanza region have joined the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) after being trained on the importance of the service to the group.

One of the reasons for motorcyclists to join the health insurance is the assurance of acquiring a temporary permit for accessing medical services in case the new member fell sick before getting the fund’s ID which is normally provided within seven working days.

The motorcyclists joined the fund this week during a seminar organised by NHIF which brought together bodaboda leaders from across the region. The Fund’s Head of Compliance Department, Mr Paul Bulolo said that “Once a person has paid 100,000/-, he automatically becomes eligible to have access to the medical services.

The card is normally out not beyond seven working days, but if a member falls sick before having it, we give the temporary permit.” He explained that in order to join the Fund, one should submit a national ID and telephone number. The principal member is also allowed to pay the same amount for his partner and 50,400/- for a child, after submitting marriage and birth certificates.

Mr Bulolo further said that those with partners but don’t have marriage certificates can register for marriage at District Commissioner offices, where the document is made available within 21 days. “We also receive birth announcement from hospitals for a baby less than six months of age, because we know that issuance of the actual birth certificate is in progress,” he affirmed.

Bodaboda leader in Nyamagana District, Mr Leonard Emmanuel sought to know among others, the number of dependents. Responding, Mr Bulolo said that four dependants only are allowed to be registered with the fund. He noted that even a polygamist can register all his wives (instead of children) to NHIF as long as he doesn’t exceed the given number of dependents.

“And basing on the fact that we are of different financial backgrounds, it is not necessary to register all departments at once,” said Bulolo. Mwanza Regional Bodaboda leader, Mr Makoye Balinago, commented that deliberate efforts have been made to make sure all 36 (bodaboda) groups, with a total 36,000 members, have joined the Fund.

He admitted that no group has ever joined NHIF, probably because members lacked education on the importance of the health insurance. “We have now got educated enough and agreed that every leader should bring atleast 20 members from his zone,” he said. Assistant Police Inspector, Mr Charles Munthali, urged motorcyclists to join the Fund, saying that they are very prone to road accidents, especially due to the

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