The doctors’ union has petitioned Parliament to improve referral hospitals.
Through the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union, in collaboration with Boresha Maisha, the doctors want the number of the national referral facilities increased from four to 11.
They are Kenyatta, Moi Teaching and Referral, Mathari and the National Spinal Injury Referral.
The doctors have prepared a draft bill proposing that the existing 11 Level 5 hospitals be elevated to regional referral and training hospitals.
They will be managed by the national government.
These include Nyeri, Thika, Machakos, Meru, Embu, Kakamega, Kisii, Garissa, Coast, Kisumu and Nakuru. The doctors also seek health funds protected at the counties to avoid diverting health funds to politically visible projects such as roads.
The KMPDU and Boresha Maisha want funds sent by the National Treasury directly to the hospitals.
KMPDU chairman Samuel Oroko yesterday said, “Every hospital should have its own board and a CEO. This way health facilities will be allowed to spend the money.”
“Hospitals no longer control money. They collect, sent to the county governments, then go begging for the same money.” He said it should not be difficult for hospitals to repair equipment or buy medicine.
Oroko spoke in Nairobi during a breakfast meeting with the Senate Committee on Health.
Nyeri Woman Rep Priscilla Nyokabi said geographically large areas should have more hospitals. “Take a look at Coast Provincial General Hospital, it serves a lot of people. We should consider having another one in Lamu,” said Nyokabi, who is also the convenor of Boresha Maisha.