NO DRUGS, NO THEATRE

Patients fed on school leftovers, Kisumu MCAs report says

Ad-hoc committee says Chulaimbo Subcounty Hospital in Kisumu West has not received UHC funding

In Summary

· MCA Samo the situation in hospitals in Kisumu has moved from bad to worse. It is high time Nyong’o is told the truth.

• "We must stop sugarcoating him that ‘tich tire’ (work is being done). There is nothing of the sort'.

The Kisumu County Assembly
NOT IMPRESSED: The Kisumu County Assembly
Image: FAITH MATETE

 

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Patients at a Kisumu hospital are fed on leftovers from a nearby school, a probe by MCAs has established.

The Kisumu county assembly's ad-hoc committee on health toured Chulaimbo Subcounty Hospital on March 3 and found inpatients fed on school leftovers.

A report tabled in the assembly shows the hospital in Kisumu West also lacked drugs and other essentials.

The report says the food supply store was empty and that the hospital management asked relatives to bring food to their patients.

The nine-member committee chaired by Beatrice Pamela also found out that the facility only received funds in quarter one of universal health coverage and was operating in a deficit. 

The hospital also lacked power supply. Power was disconnected as a result of the non-payment of Sh100,000 pending bill. The committee said there was no water supply, with the hospital relying on a borehole.

The report said the hospital has a staff shortage with no accountant to manage finances disbursed to the facility. There were no funds to purchase oxygen tanks to be used in the wards.

 

The hospital is partially supported by development partners (AMPATH and Unicef) which offer training of students in the facility.

It was found to have no theatre. Since the inception of universal health coverage (UHC), Kisumu hospitals have recorded a patient influx of 283 per cent, the MCAs said.

At the Kisumu County Referral Hospital, the team found the facility was operating in debt and depended on its good rapport with suppliers to get essentials.

The report said the hospital used to collect Sh18 million per quarter but was forced to depend on the Sh6.5 million from the county government. The funding is often disbursed in quarters. The last disbursement was made in December 2019.

The hospital was expected to receive Sh26 million in 2019-20 financial year but the funding remains in doubt, the MCAs said. The referral hospital has accumulated a debt of Sh70 million.

It was last supplied with commodities by Kemsa last year, some of the supplies such as laboratory reagents are not compatible with equipment.

Kajulu MCA Roy Samo said Governor Anyang Nyong’o must take full responsibility for the worsening situation in public hospitals despite millions being pumped in the health docket every year.

Samo said that county health workers have also been grappling with non-payment of salaries for months.

He said people were lying to the governor that he was on the right track yet "our people are suffering in health facilities."

"The situation in hospitals in Kisumu has moved from bad to worse. It is high time Nyong’o is told the truth. We must stop sugarcoating him that ‘tich tire’ (work is being done”. There is nothing of the sort,” Samo said.

He cited the death of a child in Kajulu after she was bitten by a dog. The girl could not get treatment at Gita Subcounty Hospital because there were no drugs. The hospital also lacked a mortuary.

“The child was transferred to our referral hospital and still could not be treated over the lack of drugs. She later succumbed to her injuries,” Samo said.

The MCA also criticised the recent changes in the health department after Nyong’o appointed himself the executive member for the docket.

“The changes made targets incoming funds from the World Bank. Some people have seen a loophole and want to use the opportunities to mint money,” Samo said.

He added, “You’re the appointing authority. You can’t appoint yourself and oversight yourself. He could have appointed a qualified and competent officer.”

The MCA dismissed the narrative that Kisumu has not been receiving UHC funds from the national government.

“The county government has received Sh450 million for UHC. The assembly in the current budget allocated more than Sh3 billion. The amount of money that is pumped in by the donors is as well colossal,” he said.

He said the UHC has been piloted in Machakos, Nyeri, Isiolo and Kisumu counties and questioned why only Kisumu was complaining of funds day.

“The issue in our health system is purely about poor leadership,” Samo said.

 

edited by peter obuya