Trade opportunities on kidney disease untapped in Kenya

NYANDARUA, KENYA: A huge opportunity for investment in renal health care and other areas of medical concern lies unexploited in the counties, according to a joint outcome of discussions between Nyandarua County officials and Chinese investors in healthcare.

Professor Li Zoua specialist in internal medicine, led the Chinese delegation while Dr Mach aria Gakuru lead the delegation from Kidney Research Kenya in the discussion held with Governor Francis Kimemia.

The discussion revolved around promotion of renal care within Nyandarua County by building and equipping hospitals, human resource capacity building and kidney treatment and care.

Establishment of pharmaceutical factory in Nyandarua or within the larger Central Kenya block was also explored. The huge gap in renal health care was well explained by Dr John Mungai, the County Executive Committee Member for Health.

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Nyandarua has a seven-bed renal unit at J.M Kariuki memorial hospital in Ol Kalou. Mungai said this is gross shortage.

He noted that the Central Kenya block which constitute ten counties host a third of Kenya’s population but lacks a good hospital dedicated to kidney care. “Each county has one or two dialysis centers and may be in the

block we have only two or three nephrologists,” he said. Mungai said the block does not have a tertiary hospital, and there is an opportunity among the ten counties in the block and the neighbouring ones for establishment of a hospital that specializes in kidney care.

“The population is there, the needs are there, and conducive environment for investors is there,” he said.

The medic said such investment would open up opportunity for manufacturers of medical equipment including kidney care consumables to come in.

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He said numerous benefits come with a proper regional hospital including training opportunities for doctors and other health care workers.

Other than specialists, such facility would offer direct employment to 500 people mostly locals, hence an opportunity for economic development.

Further, he said, there is guaranteed return to investors especially through the cost of running a bed a day and ?nancing models under Universal Health Care and the NHIF.

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