- The drugs will sustain the county for the next three months and the stock of gloves will last five months.
- Members of the public were concerned about the shortage of paracetamols, oxytocin and clean examination gloves.
The Turkana county government has procured medical supplies worth Sh59 million to end shortage of the items in its hospitals.
Health facilities in Turkana have faced shortages of drugs and gloves forcing patients to buy from pharmacies.
Health executive Jane Ajele said they received medical supplies worth Sh59 million from Mission for Essential Drugs and Supplies.
“The supplies will cushion and facilitate service provision by Lodwar County Referral Hospital and 211 health facilities in the seven subcounties across Turkana county,” she said.
She said the key concern by members of the public was the shortage of paracetamols, oxytocin and clean examination gloves.
“Today, we have received and flagged off distribution of essential drugs and a total of 10,000 gloves, of which 1,440 were supplied last week by Kemsa and 7,000 today by MEDS,” she said.
She said the drugs will sustain the county for the next three months and the stock of gloves will last five months.
Chief officer of Health Augustine Lokwang warned the health officers at Lodwar County Referral Hospital and facilities across the county against asking patients to buy gloves or prescribing drugs not in the approved essential list to force patients to buy in private chemists.
He said the department had put in place a public complaints mechanism including a 24/7 toll free number that will receive grievances on service delivery in all government health facilities.
He urged the public to use the toll free number to alert the department of service delivery gaps in any government facility in the county.
Lokwang encouraged the public to report and share evidence of any theft of government drugs or drugs finding their way into private chemists to facilitate action.
Director medical supplies Epem confirmed that Kemsa is expected to supply an additional 3,000 gloves and medicine.
Turkana residents had protested over shortage of gloves and drugs at Lodwar County Referral Hospital.
Residents claimed they were being asked to buy gloves from pharmacies in Lodwar town whenever they sought health services at the county referral hospital.
The county government shifted the blame to the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority for failing to supply the hospital with enough gloves.
Health executive Ajele confirmed that they didn't have enough gloves at the facility.
She said they requested gloves from Kemsa and were only given 2,000, which were not enough.
She said Turkana county needed at least 3,000 packs of gloves.
“We are having a problem because of the Kemsa Act, which states that we cannot buy anything outside from Kemsa and yet it doesn’t have what we need,” she said.
Edited by Henry Makori