Baringo county government has procured drugs and vaccines worth over Sh. 41 million for distribution to heath facilities to alleviate the current shortages.
The Chief Officer in charge of Health, Dr. Gideon Toromo said that disbursement exercise to county and sub county referral hospitals has kicked off and it will be followed by health centres and dispensaries across the seven sub counties starting next week.
Speaking during a county development implementation committee meeting chaired by County Commissioner (CC), Henry Wafula, Dr. Toromo stated that among the medical consignment procured include the most sought after anti-snake venom and rabies vaccines meant to help curb rising reported cases of snake bites.
“We shall make sure that all health centres and dispensaries in zones prone to snake bites and rabbies were equipped with the vaccines. We shall also retrain staff manning such facilities on how to administer the venom in particular as most of them fear injecting patients with the venom,” he reiterated.
In the inaugural meeting attended by the newly deployed Presidential Delivery Unit (PDU) officer in charge of Baringo, West Pokot and Turkana counties, Martin Rotich, the Chief Officer told the committee that the county government was finalizing the process of recruiting 200 interns to alleviate the biting shortage of critical medical staff in all cadres.
Once recruited, he said, the interns will be posted to health facilities in far flung areas which has remained closed for a long time due to shortage of personnel.
The department, he added, has rolled out an awareness programme to address the upsurge of snake bites and on how to handle the situation once someone fall a victim.
On medical equipment scheme (MES) rolled out by the national government to address one of the Big Four agenda on affordable healthcare, Dr. Toromo informed the committee that all the equipment like dialysis machine, digital X-rays, surgical equipment and MRI availed to Kabarnet county and Eldama Ravine sub county referral hospitals were in full use.
“About 14 patients undergo dialysis per week at Kabarnet referral hospital instead of 20.This is because we do not have adequate trained staff to work in the section. Again we don’t have a CT scan and MRI machine for Eldama Ravine,” Dr Toromo stated.
The committee asked Dr. Toromo to investigate why health personnel in Eldama Ravine sub county referral hospital were demanding Sh. 1,000 to fill a P3 form and do not issue any receipt yet the service is supposed to be free.
They also complained that the same hospital was charging between Sh5, 000 and Sh10, 000 for any postmortem conducted despite the facility being public institution.
The county commissioner in his opening remarks asked the national government county heads to take the presidential delivery unit meetings very seriously reiterating that there will be no delegation.
Rotich in his maiden address urged the departmental heads to maintain timelines and provide accurate information whenever asked to do so.
By Joshua Kibet