Contact information

Why should I join?

Do you also feel that everybody should be able to visit a good doctor or hospital when they need one?

We tend to take our access to quality health care for granted, but in many countries in Africa it is far more difficult to feel that secure. By making a contribution you help bring access to quality health care within reach of African families, too. It takes a weight off their shoulders.

You can make a difference. It’s that simple.

Why health insurance in Africa?

Most people in Africa pay for their healthcare costs cash, out of pocket. Often they cannot afford these usually sudden costs.

Imagine the following scenario: you are a coffee farmer in Tanzania and you are working hard to earn a modest income for yourself and your family. Then you become sick. Because you are not insured, you have to sell your small plantation to pay the healthcare costs. Your whole family is set back, sinking into poverty because the medical costs are too high. In one fell swoop, everything you have been building is gone.

Health insurance as we know it, doesn’t really exist in Africa. There is so little health insurance, in fact, that it only covers 4% of total healthcare expenditure on the continent.

The quality of the existing health care, and gaining access to it, are also problems in Africa. Hospitals are burdened beyond capacity and there is a structural shortage of medical equipment and trained staff. Most African governments are not managing to solve these problems on their own.

This is why the Dutch Health Insurance Fund is developing a way to strengthen and improve the entire health sector in these countries. This can be achieved only if governments join forces with the private sector.

Where does my contribution go?

Your monthly contribution to Global Health Membership is invested in the programs of the Health Insurance Fund. These programs aim to make access to quality health care available and affordable, by introducing health insurance, for example, and ensuring quality health care.

The goal is to create a smoothly operating healthcare system with affordable health insurances, a well-informed public on health issues and to have enough doctors, nurses and medicines for everyone.

How can I be sure my donation will be spent well?

Global Health Membership is an initiative of the Dutch Health Insurance Fund and Achmea. The Health Insurance Fund is a fund with an established well-organized form of governance and annually approved audit reports.

The Health Insurance Fund in addition to its Chamber of Commerce registration, has ANBI status (so it is an accredited non-profit organization, which means your donation is tax-deductible to the full extent provided by law) and works with various reliable donors and investors, including the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the World Bank and the American government (USAID).

Can I cancel my contribution?

Of course, you can cancel your monthly contribution any time you want. Please take into account the time needed to process your request. You can write a letter to:

Health Insurance Fund
Post box 22700
1100 DE Amsterdam

Or send an e-mail to:

Why are we paying for their health care, shouldn’t their own government do that?

As in our own country, the governments in Africa are making a contribution to health care. And just like in our country, they cannot do this on their own. That is why private parties, such as insurers, are needed to help the government do this. We want to stimulate this public-private approach in Africa as well.

Your contribution adds to the public investment. What’s more, it gives people the opportunity to pick a healthcare provider and demand higher levels of service.

What is the Global Health Membership?

Global Health Membership is an initiative of the Dutch Health Insurance Fund and Achmea. In partnership with Zilveren Kruis, other health insurers, companies and people such as yourself, Global Health Membership wants to make quality health care possible for large groups of people in Africa.

They do this by training doctors and nurses, improving the quality of hospitals and making health insurance affordable for people in Africa.

What does the Health Insurance Fund do?

The Dutch Health Insurance Fund (HIF) was established in 2006 with the support of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Its objective is to work together with local health insurers to make access to quality health care possible for low-income earners in Africa. The Health Insurance Fund does this by supporting an integrated approach through which access to health care is improved as well as the quality of this health care.

We bring primary health care to uninsured groups of people in low-income areas. These groups can range from farmers and livestock owners to independent contractors and market women. After extensive consultation, we set up a health plan that is adjusted to their needs and income. They contribute to the according to their spending power, and in the early stages, Health Insurance Fund finances the residual part of the premium.

At the same time, we ensure that the health plans offer quality health care. The clinics and hospitals are held to international quality standards: they follow standard procedures, administer the correct medicine and train their medical staff. By seeking partnerships with governments and local authorities, in time Health Insurance Fund aims for them to contribute financially and to assume responsibility for delivering affordable and quality health care in their respective regions.

Our insurance partners are established organizations with good reputations, adhering to international regulations and in possession of an approved accountancy declaration. We work together with all stakeholders to improve elements in the healthcare market: quality of clinics, trained medical staff, quality medicine in stock and affordable health insurance. As such, we contribute to building a smoothly operating healthcare system, improving access to quality health care for those who need it most.

What has the Health Insurance Fund achieved?

At this moment, in Nigeria, Kenya and Tanzania approx. 100,000 are insured through the health plans of the Health Insurance Fund. Because these people now have access to affordable quality healthcare, the healthcare facilities have been able to provide quality services during almost 40,000 childbirth deliveries, and over 80,000 cases of malaria have been detected and treated on time.

In addition, the quality of 900 clinics participating in the internationally recognized quality program has improved tremendously and over a 1000 doctors and nurses have received training. With the result that each month over 1 million patients receive better quality health care.

Can I be sure none of the money will be misappropriated?

Yes. Your money is in good hands and will be put to good use. This is also why Zilveren Kruis chose to work with the Dutch Health Insurance Fund.

The Health Insurance Fund is registered with the Dutch Chamber of Commerce and has ANBI status (so it is an accredited non-profit organization, which means your donation is tax-deductible to the full extent provided by law). Furthermore, it has several reliable donors and investors, including the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the World Bank and the American government (USAID).

What does health insurance cost in Africa?

On average a health insurance policy in Africa costs between €33 and €60 per year. For many people, such as the farming families in Nigeria, that is a huge amount of money. Money they simply do not have or can’t miss.

Is such a small amount per month of any use?

We are aware that people all over the world, including in our own communities, are also working hard to make ends meet. That is why Global Health Membership works with small monthly payments. Starting at €3 per month, your contribution can already make a difference. It will help us make access to quality health care affordable for people in Africa, by introducing affordable health insurance for example. We also work on improving the medical quality, by training doctors and carrying out quality assurance controls.

Who is enrolled in the health insurance in Africa?

These are mainly working people with a low income. The farmers in Kwara state for example, or coffee farmers in Tanzania, dairy farmers in Kenya or small business owners and market women in Lagos.

These are groups of people who are developing economically, but will never get the chance to thrive if they don’t have access to affordable and quality health care. The peace of mind and security that come from having access to affordable, quality health care are priceless. They no longer need to deal with unexpected expenses and can focus fully on their own economic independence.

What does the health plan cover?

The insurance covers all basic care, small operations, mother & child health care, and malaria treatment.

Can everyone in Africa now take out an insurance policy?

Not yet. We started in African areas where the political climate is reasonably stable and a basic infrastructure is already in place. This makes it possible for us to work on strengthening the existing healthcare system together with the local government. Of course we want to expand this as far as it can go. This is another reason why your contribution is so important: the more people join, the farther we can reach.

What is Global Health Membership’s ambition?

We want to achieve access to affordable quality health care for one million low-income earners in Africa by 2018.

What sets Global Health Membership apart from other charities?

Our basic premise is to improve health care in Africa in a sustainable and structured way.

- With the involvement of local partners;
- Contributions from the Africans themselves;
- Not a one-time intervention but an improvement of the whole chain of care;
- Not emergency aid but long-term aid

Why is Zilveren Kruis involved?

Zilveren Kruis believes in Health Insurance Fund’s plan and sees Global Health Membership as an initiative that can connect people on a foundation of solidarity and equality.

Everyone after all has the same basic need for quality health care. Together with you and other international insurance companies, Zilveren Kruis wants to contribute to making that possible.

Contact information

Postal address

Post box 22700
1100 AP Amsterdam

Telephone number: 020-2103920

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