It was an early Christmas gift for hundreds of Embu West Sub-County residents after they were treated to a free medical camp organized by local based financial institution, Daima Sacco, to the tune of Sh800, 000.
The one-day camp held at Kairuri Grounds on Tuesday came as a reprieve to patients who have not been able to access medical care due to the prevailing harsh economic times and lack of drugs in public health facilities.
Hundreds of residents who turned as early as 6.30 am were examined and treated for various diseases such as hypertension, arthritis, diabetes and Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) diseases as well as screening for breast, cervical and prostate cancer by a team of over 300 medical practitioners assembled by the Sacco management.
Other services that were offered included NHIF registration and tips on proper nutrition and family planning.
“We did this as part of our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) of giving back to the society to show our clients that we not only care about doing business with them, but that their health and wellbeing also matters to us,” said Daima Sacco CEO Dianah Mbogo.
She said ill-health was affecting many of their members who are basically farmers with ailments such as hypertension, diabetes and arthritis featuring most thus affecting their productivity.
“We got concerned over the outcry of the populace who are complaining over rising cases of these ailments and decided to do something to alleviate their suffering,” she said.
Beneficiary Jane Njagi said she had been suffering from back pains for over two years and unable to be treated owing to cost implications.
“I went to a public facility around here and was given prescription drugs worth Sh800 that I have not been able to buy to date for lack of money, but today I am happy I was treated and given medicines free of charge,” she said.
Another beneficiary, Juliet Njagi said she has been suffering joint pains and was given medication and also screened for breast and cervical cancer and was happy that the results came out negative.
Simon Njiru said he hoped the treatment he received for back pains would end his years of agony and be able to go back to his farming activities normally.
County Health Promotion Officer Pauline Nginyo who was in charge of the team of medics involved noted that the most prevalent ailments were respiratory tract infections and arthritis due to the cold weather associated with the tea and coffee growing zone.
Other ailments that also featured a lot according to her included hypertension and diabetes, adding that they also had one case each of suspected cervical and breast cancer that they referred to Tenri Hospital for further examination.
By Samuel Waititu