MP wants Kemsa paid by Treasury to end drug shortages in county hospitals

Ugunja's Wandayi says lives should not be lost due to delays in disbursing funds to the devolved units

In Summary

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi has asked the government to link treasury and Kemsa to end the perennial drug shortage occasioned by delay in funds disbursement to Counties.

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi at Rangala Children's Home on Monday
UNHAPPY: Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi at Rangala Children's Home on Monday


Kemsa should be directly paid by the National Treasury for drugs delivered to hospitals to end the perennial shortage of supplies to county health facilities.

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi on Monday said the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority should be directly linked to the Treasury so delays in disbursing funds to the counties do not affect its payments.

Kemsa has previously declined to supply drugs to county hospitals citing non-payment. 

Wandayi asked the Treasury to come to the aid of ailing Kenyans and seek a long-lasting solution with Kemsa to procure and distribute drugs to county health facilities on debts.

He suggested that the authority be paid directly by the Treasury from the accounts of the respective counties.

'It will be of great help if Kemsa distributed drugs on debts and later paid directly by Treasury instead of holding drugs to county health facilities," Wandayi said.

The lawmaker was speaking at Rang'ala Children's Home in his constituency.

The said health facilities were facing major challenges owing to the late procurement of drugs because of delayed disbursement of funds to counties.

'This is a situation that can be arrested through government interventions to help save lives," he said.

Wandayi said reverting health docket to the national government was uncalled for and that the government should heed his advice to save devolution.

Kemsa is the official supplier of drugs to counties but sometimes decline to deliver medicine citing debts.

In May, Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko threatened to procure drugs from private suppliers after Kemsa suspended supplies over Sh284 million debt.

"Under emergency procurement, we will look for drug suppliers and pay them every month. We won't politick with lives of people but we won't kneel before Kemsa; they are not God," Sonko said.

On Monday, Wandayi wondered why Kemsa cannot supply drugs on debts when they have never failed to get their payment whenever funds are available.

“If they doubt counties then they can save lives by entering an agreement with the counties to be paid directly from Treasury upon the availability of funds,” the MP  said.

He said such an agreement will address perennial lack of drugs in hospitals.

“The running of our health facilities at all levels needs a consistent supply of drugs. Our people should not be dying due to lack of drugs knowing very well that the government should provide drugs," Wandayi said.

He said it was a fact that counties were facing challenges in getting money on time to buy drugs that are required in hospitals.

"At the moment, if you visit any health facilities at the county level the main challenge they face is lack of drugs due to late funds disbursement," Wandayi said.

The MP at the same time urged the government to embrace an integrated approach to support orphanage homes.

He said it’s heartbreaking to see some of the orphanages in pathetic status when there is government allocation to support the vulnerable.

Wandayi donated incubators to Rangala Children's Home.


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