Partnering with Swiss Re Foundation: Randomized-Control-Trial

The Approach

To help realise the Kenyan government’s recently adopted goal of universal health coverage, it’s crucial to understand how formal health insurance in general, and DDFinance insurance in particular, affects low-income households’ well-being. Led by researchers at the Zurich Center for Economic Development of the University of Zurich, this research project will rigorously measure the impact of DDFinance’s hospital and life insurance product on low-income households’ health status, use of costly financing strategies and subjective well-being in a randomised controlled trial. The outcomes to be measured include a wide range of indicators, from health status (subjective perception, use of hospital facilities) to alternative risk coping strategies such as selling livestock. We expect the results of this evaluation to be interesting for anyone developing health coverage solutions for the underserved.

Swiss Re Foundation awarded a EUR 545,000 grant for a Randomized-Control-Trial (RCT) to analyse health and wellbeing impact from DDFinance’s health insurance cover with Kenyan customers

Goals and Expected Impact

The intervention will directly benefit the 9 000 individuals who will receive access to either insurance or cash subsidies and indirectly benefit their 22 500 dependents (including children). However, the project’s main impact will be to advance understanding of private, collective-based health insurance in both academic and policy circles.

The researchers expect to produce an academic paper for submission to a leading journal in development economics. The article will shed light on mechanisms through which health insurance can affect subscribers’ welfare at the individual and group levels, including health outcomes, risk management and risk coping strategies and income maintenance. Further, a policy brief targeted at stakeholders in the health insurance sector will summarise the evaluation’s key results.