Massive challenges facing beyond zero clinics turn residents away


Beyond Zero community clinic in Kianda at Kibera,they face shortage of water despite operating.This was on 12 June 2017. Photo by Edward Kiplimo.

Most of the Beyond Zero clinics in Kibera are not serving the purpose for which they were intended.

A spot-check by the Metropolitan on the 11 Beyond Zero facilities set up in the area revealed that only four are fully operational and offering services.

Three of the clinics are not operating and services are offered at three others only some times.

While the four operational ones are equipped to handle most of the services, they are still struggling to efficiently attend to residents.

The clinics are struggling with inadequate health personnel and lack of basic items such as laboratory reagents, water, and detergents.

Not operating

The sister in charge of the Kianda 42 clinic, Beatrice Lusinde, said the facility was the biggest and the only one with a clinical officer.

IT also has two nurses and a casual worker. The rest of the clinics have only one or two nurses and rarely have casual labourers.

At Soweto clinic, for instance, cobwebs cover the padlock. The windows are dusty and the washrooms have tools stored in them.

The facility is located inside the Soweto Academy compound and the school attendants say it has been closed for months.

"The facility only has one nurse, who is unwell. However, the facility is operational," says Lusinde.

A nurse in one of the facilities who spoke to us on condition of anonymity as she is not authorised to speak for the programme, said: "We are tired of complaining. Same old grievances, but nothing changes through the years".

The nurse informed us that employees have to buy crucial items such as water and soap using their own money.

No funds

"Since the National Youth Service stopped providing services more than two years ago, we have had to buy water to clean the equipment and for other uses at the clinic," she says.

Workers at the Kianda 42 clinic at Kibera's terminus 42 also have to use their own money to buy essential items for the facility.

"There are no funds allocated for miscellaneous usage. We use our own money," said Lusinde.

She agrees that since the departure of NYS, who had partnered with the project to provide services, operations had been affected.