The County Government of Nakuru has commissioned a Sh 35 million Lanet Sub-County Hospital giving provision of health care services in the devolved unit major boost.
Director in charge of Health Infrastructure Development Gerald Maina, said the facility was part of Governor Lee Kinyanjui’s, Sh 1 billion upgrade program of health care facilities across the 11 Sub-Counties.
Speaking at Karuswa Village within Bahati Sub-County, when the facility was opened to the public, Mr Maina said construction of seven new sub-county hospitals will be completed by the end of this year.
“Our target is to have modern inpatient and outpatient facilities in every Sub-County. We are also establishing trauma centres at the Nakuru Level 5 Teaching and Referral Hospital, at Naivasha and Salgaa to cater for accident victims,” said the Director.
The standalone complex will have a modern maternity and neonatal wing, a pharmacy, x-ray machines and modern laboratories. The facility will house an outpatient complex, accident and emergency unit, an imaging centre and theatres among other essential services.
Maina, who was accompanied by area Member of County Assembly Michael Muchembu Chege, noted the outpatient wing will also offer the highest standard of medical training and top quality of specialized healthcare services.
He said the new facility had been designed to offer health care services to 200,000 residents from the Sub-County and its adjoining areas.
The hospital will also cater for injured patients received from the notorious black spots along the Nairobi-Nakuru-Eldoret highway.
“The facility will have the trauma/accident and emergency, obstetrics, gynecology, ophthalmology, pharmacy, radiology and radiotherapy and minor surgery theatres among other departments,” said the Director.
He said other facilities nearing completion include the Sh 159 million Njoro Sub-County Hospital, the Sh 157 Molo Sub-County Hospital and the Sh 60 million outpatient complex at Olenguruone Health Centre.
The modern Sh 330 million outpatient complex at the Naivasha Sub-County Referral Hospital is expected to be operational within the next 3 months. The project is a joint-partnership of the County and National governments and Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen).
Maina said investment in modern outpatient units across the devolved unit was part of the county administration’s efforts to revamp the county’s health sector and improve efficiency in emergency response.
The County administration, he said was keen on decongesting the Nakuru Level 5 Teaching and Referral Hospital by modernizing all Sub-county hospitals.
The Level 5 hospital serves more than eight counties in the South Rift region including Bomet, Kericho, Samburu, Baringo, Nyandarua, and Laikipia where 2,000 patients are treated daily, 750 of them being inpatients.
Chege noted malaria, diseases of the respiratory system, skin diseases, diarrhea, and intestinal parasites were major challenges at outpatient facilities around the county. The new facility he noted would provide easily accessible health services for Kenyans in the sub county and beyond.
“A huge investment in outpatient health facilities is still needed to improve health services across the county. We are looking at avenues towards increasing budgetary allocation and looking for donor support.“There is a need to realize that frequent health problems including accidental injuries, urinary tract infections, eye infections, rheumatism, and other infections are handled by outpatient facilities. Combined, these ten leading conditions account for nearly four-fifths of the total outpatient cases reported,” noted the MCA.
The county runs 184 health facilities including dispensaries, health centres, level four hospitals and the Nakuru Level Five Hospital.
At Sh 6 billion, the health department in Nakuru got the lion’s share Sh15 billion 2020/2021 budget. This translates to nearly 36 percent of the budget.
A chunk of the funds has been allocated towards construction of such new health infrastructures and procurement of modern medical equipment.
By Anne Mwale