REPUBLIC OF KENYA

CS health sets pace, celebrates Christmas with children at KNH Pediatric cancer ward

Nairobi (KENYA) December 20, 2019 – Universal Health Coverage (UHC) will be rolled out countrywide from the beginning of next year, Health Ministry Cabinet Secretary (CS) Sicily Kariuki announced.

Speaking at the Kenyatta National Hospital, the CS urged all health workers to strive to ensure they provide optimal healthcare services to patients to ensure UHC is realized.

“I appreciate the role that doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers are currently providing to our patients…As we plan to roll-out UHC countrywide, I would therefore like to urge them to remain dedicated to their noble calling,” said the CS during an event she hosted to celebrate Christmas with Children at the Pediatric cancer ward where she presented them with a television set for the chemo centre and a fridge for storage of medication.

During the function, the CS enrolled four children with the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) card to assist them in assessing treatment and said the Ministry of Health will work closely with Governors to ensure that health centres and dispensaries are fully equipped and appropriate health personnel are deployed.

“We are also training Community Health Workers to enable them mobilize  people at the grassroots to go for early screening and detection for diseases such as cancer and other Non-Communicable diseases which are on the increase… If our health centres and dispensaries are fully functional, then KNH and other referral and teaching hospitals will be able to undertake their critical roles of being specialized facilities and allow our referral system to become functional,” she noted.

The CS highlighted that the Ministry will be focusing on Primary Health Care (PHC) instead of curative services. By embracing this strategy shall be able to drastically reduce our disease burden in this country, she said.

Kariuki also announced that the Government has established 10 chemotherapy centres in various parts of the country to assist in the treatment of cancer and four centres of excellence.

She also announced that over 300,000 girls aged 10 years have so far been vaccinated by the HPV vaccine to protect them against cervical cancer in adulthood. “Our target is to vaccinate 800,000 girls countrywide with the HPV vaccine,” she said.

She also  welcomed the landmark ruling made by the High Court last month banning smoking in public areas adding that the Ministry will ensure that the ban is implemented countrywide.