KENYA –Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) has dispensed medical stock worth KES 24 million (US$211,268) to Busia County to ensure uninterrupted delivery of healthcare services to residents.

The delivered items consist of pharmaceuticals, non-pharmaceuticals, films for x-ray and dental supplies which will be distributed to the county’s health facilities.

Patients in the county hospitals have condemned lack of drugs in health facilities since they were forced to purchase drugs and other medical equipment from private pharmacies at higher prices.

The supply comes as a timely intervention to the health sector due to the numerous strikes by angry residents that have paralyzed operations in the department.

The consignment supplied was missing some essential items such as examination gloves and analgesics like paracetamol that had been ordered but the county will make efforts to avail items missing for continuity of health services.

The County Pharmacist, Dr. Abiud Machuki confirmed that Busia County Referral Hospital (BCRH) received supplies worth KES 6.6 million (US$58,099) for treatment and diagnosis of patient’s conditions.

We are hoping that through the backorder, KEMSA will be able to fill the gaps of the missing items,” Dr Machuki said.

Despite the criticism from locals over shortage of drugs in public hospitals, stockouts at KEMSA and the limited budget allocated for the purchase of the same remains a key challenge.

We do not get all the drugs that we order based on the needs of the locals across the county and we need more budgetary allocation for health commodities to ensure uninterrupted medical supply,” Dr Machuki emphasized.

Budget restraints, resources/facilities, avoidable errors, patient cooperation and healthcare system are major factors influencing healthcare delivery in Kenya.

For example, a proper healthcare system supplies all medical facilities with enough drugs to ensure no one is forced to buy drugs outside the facilities as well as adequate drug supply in the facilities.

New healthcare management system in Kirinyaga County

Meanwhile, Kirinyaga County has unveiled a new health management system to help public hospitals address issues of drug shortage.

The Health Management Information System piloted at the Kerugoya County Referral Hospital will ensure medical facilities have adequate supply of medicine around the clock.

County Executive Committee Member (CEC) for Health Gladys Kimingi said the data collection system is specifically designed to support planning, management and decision-making in health facilities and organizations.

Evidence-based decision making is critically important for the appropriate use of scarce resources like drugs particularly when resources are limited,” she added.

All medical facilities have been trained on how to use the system where one has to log in using a personal password so as to dispense any drug.

Advancement in health care delivery systems ensures quality and cost-effective health services to people across the country.

However, some counties are still facing sexual and reproductive health challenges like Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), teenage pregnancies among other vices working against the development of girls.

Meru County Government allocates US$17,598 towards family planning

In recent developments, health officials in Meru have raised an alarm over rising cases of abortion among young women aged over 25 years as well as rise of teenage pregnancies.

The Meru County Health Records Officer Robert Kinoti observed that the cases of abortion doubled within a span of four months increasing from 1,690 in June to 3,475 in October 2021.

Initially, abortion cases were linked to unwanted pregnancies among teenagers but health officials now link the vice to an emerging trend on decline in uptake of contraceptives,” he noted.

Consequently, the county government has responded to gaps in the health sector by allocating about KES 2 million (US$17,598) towards family planning services.

The county has also intensified its effort in eradication of FGM by training health workers in hot spot areas as well as establishment of a technical working group on FGM.

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