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Unlicensed health facilities on radar

Turkana County Medical Services Office has put on notice proprietors of unlicensed health facilities and medical practitioners warning that disciplinary action would be taken against those flouting regulations.

This follows the submission of a report by the Joint Health Inspection Team, which conducted inspections on 23 health facilities (public, private, and faith-based) in Lodwar Township and Kanamkemer Wards.

Speaking during the tabling of the report, the County Chief Officer of Medical Services, Dr. Gilchrist Lokoel, stated that it was the mandate of the Department to safeguard county residents by ensuring they receive healthcare services from certified facilities and qualified practitioners.

“It is paramount that all medical staff ensure that their practising licences are updated,” he said, adding that medical students should never provide healthcare services without supervision.

The inspection team, led by James Mwangi, Principal Nursing Officer, used the Routine Health Checklist to assess various aspects such as facility registration and licences, staff licences, infection Prevention and Control protocols, infrastructure, laboratories, and pharmacies, among others.

Those present raised concern regarding certain deficiencies observed in some facilities, including a lack of disability mainstreaming (such as ramps), insufficient space, inadequate patient confidentiality measures, staff dressed in civilian clothes, and lack of surveying and fencing of public facilities.

Some of the inspection team’s recommendations included staffing norms and standards which should be adhered to, access to Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), the provision of service contracts for laboratory equipment, and strengthening quality assurance teams.

Ag. Director of Medical Services Alice Akalapatan, David Ekai (Ag. Deputy Director of Clinical Services), Benjamin Lowoko (Chief Medical Laboratory Technologist), and Nancy Kinyonge (Deputy Director of Administration and Partnerships) were present.

By Peter Gitonga 

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