Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA) and the National Council for Persons with Disabilities has flagged-off a consignment of sunscreen agents worth Sh54 million destined for more than 192 public health facilities, to alleviate the plight of persons living with albinism.
Provision of sunscreen agents with a sun protection factor of 50 and above (SPF 50+) is a public health requirement, with such agents now listed in the Kenya Essential Medicine list.
Speaking at an event to flag-off delivery vehicles heading to more than 45 counties, KEMSA Acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO), John Kabuchi, flanked by senior officials from the National Council for Persons with Disabilities (NCPWD), said the Authority has been managing the procurement, warehousing and last-mile delivery of sunscreen agents to public health facilities.
“This particular consignment of sunscreen agents comprises of lip-balms, after-sun lotion, adult and children sunscreen lotions valued at more than Sh54 million,” Kabuchi said.
“KEMSA and the National Council for Persons with Disabilities have been ensuring that these sunscreen agents are delivered promptly to all health facilities, to ensure the comfort of persons living with albinism,” he added.
The distribution of the sunscreen agents to more than 3,800 persons with albinism is one of the flagship NCPWD support programmes.
NCPWD Executive Director, Harun Hassan, said the Council has been implementing this programme to cushion persons with albinism from harmful sun rays, leading to skin cancer.
He said under the Albinism Support programme, the Council provides sunscreen lotions, lip balms, and other services for all Persons with Albinism.
“One bottle of Nivea sunscreen lotion is provided to every registered Person with Albinism monthly. Additionally, clients are entitled to one after sun lotion every two months. Besides sunscreen and after-sun lotions, lip balms have also been procured for PWAs, who are entitled to a piece each month,” Hassan said.
The flag-off of the sunscreen agents comes hot on the heels of a series of recent medical supplies consignments by KEMSA to various public health facilities.
Last month, KEMSA flagged-off a consignment of assorted essential medical supplies valued at more than Sh200 million destined to various counties as part of ongoing efforts to ensure the national scale-up of the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) programme.
The Authority has maintained an “above-average” order fulfilment rate and last-mile deliveries to more than 11,500 health facilities countrywide.
By Hamdi Mohamud