Health CS underscores role of boards in governance, urges integrity


Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has challenged government institutions to work in harmony towards realization of the government health agenda.
Speaking on Monday during the inauguration of the nursing council of Kenya board, Kenya nuclear regulatory authority board, National cancer institute of Kenya board and the National Committee on Infant and Young Child Feeding, Kagwe said unity among the various government actors was critical in the quest to improve health outcomes in the country.
“At the end of the day, it’s about our people.  It’s not just an arrangement but about our brothers and sisters. Sometimes we don’t put that into perspective,” observed the health CS.
He said the government remains committed to deliver the highest possible standard of health in a manner responsive to the needs of the citizenry. This even as he directed members of the various boards to stay true to their mission and observe integrity in their undertakings.
“Over the past few years, we have seen the reputation of government institutions dragged in the mud due to the misconduct of a few officials I urge you to appraise yourselves with the provisions of the Mwongozo code and respect the separation of power between the management and the board. Let the management do its work, while you play your oversight role.” Advised Kagwe.
According to the health CS, Health is a fundamental right and an enabler of socio-economic development with President Kenyatta having identified Universal Health Coverage as a key priority for the Country in line with the Constitution of Kenya 2010 and the Sustainable Development Goals.
The nursing council of Kenya board, to be chaired by Professor Eunice Ndirangu, is the only professional regulatory body for all cadres of nursing and midwives in Kenya and is tasked with ensuring the delivery of safe and effective nursing and midwifery care, to the public, through quality education and best practices. Other members are; Judith Awinja, Pauline Ngala, Michael Nyongesa, Tecla Ngotie, Catherine Mwaura, Albanus Mutisya, Eric Kemboi and Dr. Joel Gondi. Ednah Kimaiyo Tallam is the council’s chief executive officer.

The Kenya nuclear regulatory authority, the national regulatory authority for radiation protection, nuclear security and nuclear safeguards, is tasked with regulating the peaceful use of ionizing radiation; ensure protection of occupationally exposed workers, patients undergoing medical radiation procedures, members of the public and the environment from the harmful effects of ionizing radiation, while at the same time ensuring that society enjoys optimal socio-economic benefits. Dr. George Njoroge is the acting Director General at the authority. Dr. Zeinab Gura, Samuel Gitau, Dr. Titus Ingana, Col. Charity Njuguna, Kakai Kissinger, Pauline Moranga, Dr. Margare Mwonjoria and Micheal Lavi Muia are members of the board.

Also inaugurated was the National Cancer Institute of Kenya board, which was established in recognition of the need for a more coordinated health sector response to the growing cancer burden in Kenya, and will be expected to play a critical role in ensuring that systems are in place for prevention and those for cancer care delivery are in harmony. The board will be chaired by Dr. Gitahi Githinji with Dr. Alfred Karagu as the Chief Executive officer. Other members are Dr. Ochiba Lukandu, Catherine Wachira, Agnes Kalekye, Francisca Atieno, Mahindra Shah, Kenrick Ayot, Mildred Mugambi, Dr. Samuel Gathere and Patrick Gathagu.

The health CS at the same time inaugurated the Committee on infant and young child feeding. It was established in line with provisions of the breast milk substitutes Act which requires the Cabinet Secretary to establish a National Committee on Infant and Young Child Feeding and provides rules for the advertisement, promotion and labelling of designated or complementary food products, i.e. infant and young children’s food as defined by the Act. The committee will be chaired by acting director general for health Dr. Patrick Amoth while Veronica Kirogo will be the Secretary. Other members of the committee are Peter Mutua, Priscilla Kairu, Evalyne Gicheru, Gladys Machira, Dr. Brian Maugo, Dr. David Okeyo, Samuel Nyamu, Martha Nyagaya, Julia Mwaisekanyi, Prof. Ruth Nduati and Shadrack Oiye.