- Data from the Ministry of Health says NCDs account for 50 per cent of hospital admissions and 55 per cent of hospital deaths
- She said the partnership with Novo Nordisk Foundation perfectly aligns with the Bottom-Up Agenda
The government has partnered with a non-governmental organisation to fight against non-communicable diseases.
Under the partnership, healthcare professionals will be trained to enhance their capacity to handle NCDs.
Data from the Ministry of Health says NCDs account for 50 per cent of hospital admissions and 55 per cent of hospital deaths.
The new partnership with Novo Nordisk, a Danish multinational pharmaceutical, also seeks to institute preventative interventions.
The organisation will train health professionals such as nurses and community health promoters on healthy lifestyles and how to treat those already affected.
Cabinet Secretary Susan Nakhumicha said cardiometabolic diseases such as heart attacks, stroke, diabetes, kidney disease, and non-alcoholic fatty liver are preventable.
She said it is unfortunate that the diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide.
Nakhumicha said NCDs are not just a health concern, but are also a roadblock to Kenya's long-term economic growth.
The CS spoke at KMTC's Gatundu campus.
She was accompanied by Public Service CS Moses Kuria, Health PS Mary Muriuki, Danish Ambassador Stephan Schonemann, MP Gabriel Kagombe and Novo Nordisk Foundation head Lars Rabien.
Nakhumicha said the government is in the process of drafting legislations and policies to tackle NCDs.
She said the Social Health Insurance Act, Digital Health Act, Primary Healthcare Act and Facility Improvement Financing Act are signals of a transformative shift in Kenya’s healthcare landscape.
“These laws pave the way for a comprehensive restructuring of the National Health Insurance Fund, ensuring better healthcare accessibility for all, especially those in lower socioeconomic strata,” Nakhumicha said.
She said the partnership with Novo Nordisk Foundation perfectly aligns with the Bottom-Up Agenda and the vision to achieve Universal Health Coverage.
“This project mirrors the government's commitment to promote collaboration across sectors. Through networking, exchange programsme and knowledge-sharing initiatives," Nakhumicha said.
"We are making sure that best practices and innovative approaches are shared and scaled up efficiently.”
She said the government is also redoubling efforts to tackle cardiovascular diseases.
PS Muriuki urged Kenyans to embrace healthy food and lifestyle to prevent NCDs.
She said an increase in lifestyle changes, urbanisation and an aging population has contributed to high healthcare challenges.
Muriuki said there is need to invest more in human resource capital, which is a critical pillar in comprehensive healthcare framework.
She said a good human resource capital will directly impact patient care and outcomes.
“Investing in comprehensive education and skill development for these professionals is crucial for enhancing healthcare services in the country," Muriuki said.
"Part of the training includes the management of CMDs, whose prevalence is rising."
The rising cases of CMDs, she said, have contributed to a huge demand on health workforce.
"The current workforce is currently limited in number and unevenly distributed to assist vulnerable populations. It also needs quality training not only for prevention but also for caring for patients living with CMDs," the PS said.
"However, there is an ongoing effort to strengthen the institutional capacity to provide high-quality education to health professionals for better prevention and care of CMDs."
"Additionally, the country is moving towards a systems approach that links the supply and demand sides of the health workforce, which will be a remedy to the currently witnessed gap,” Muriuki said.
Kagombe urged the community to work with healthcare professionals and adopt healthy lifestyles to halt and reverse the trend of NCDs.
A CMD survivor, who attended the event said he is managing his hypertension by adopting a healthy lifestyle.
He said he contacted the disease through abuse of alcohol and cigarettes.