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First Lady launches trans-County ‘Medical Safari’ to boost rural health care

By Robert Kiplagat | Published Thu, September 13th 2018 at 13:05, Updated September 14th 2018 at 00:41 GMT +3
First Lady Margaret Kenyatta (center), Narok Governor Samuel Tunai (right), Health CS Sicily Kariuki and Narok West MP Gabriel Tongoyo at Narok Stadium during the launch of the "Medical Safari". [Robert Kiplagat, Standard]

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta has officially launched the first-ever ‘Free Medical Safari’ to boost health care among residents in rural areas.

Mrs Kenyatta said the objective of the program is to provide integrated and specialised health care to all groups such as women, children and the elderly.

“Five years ago I started the Beyond Zero campaign where we managed, with partners, to provide mobile clinics to all the 47 counties in the country. We are committed to improving health and well-being of women, children and families,” said Mrs Kenyatta, yesterday.

The First Lady earlier commissioned a 10-bed capacity Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Narok County Referral Hospital, established by the area county government with Africa-Philips, where she said through partnerships, early diagnosis of various ailments will be eased.

Mrs Kenyatta also launched the Elimination of Mother to Child HIV infection Narok Chapter Plan and said no mother or child should die of preventable ailments.

The First Lady who was accompanied by the Health Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki and Dr Jackson Kioko (Director Health Services) urged Kenyans to enroll to the NHIF program and especially the Linda Mama initiative for women.

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Philips Company which is one of the partners in the Beyond Zero initiative have however came up with a new technology in the ultra-sound for the pregnant mothers.

“Philips’Lumify ultrasound will be used to carry out the screenings in Narok; this means that the mothers-to-be will be able to see high-quality images of their unborn babies on a smartphone, thanks to the mobile app and portable ultrasound,” said Jasper Westerink CEO, Philips Africa.

Kenya currently has one of the highest maternal and child mortality rates in the world, with 510 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births and 49 child deaths per 1,000 live births.

Area Governor Samuel Tunai hailed the First Lady’s initiative said it goes hand in hand with the county’s vision of scaling down maternal-related cases and preventable ailments.

“When the First Lady launched the Beyond Zero initiative, Narok was number two and now we are number one in the Medical Safari and we really appreciate as it goes in hand with our CIDP where Health Care is prioritised,”said Tunai.

Health CS announced that they are working with KEMSA, Pharmacy and Poison’s Board and the Interior Ministry to launch 100-day Rapid Results Initiative (RRI) to crack down on fake drugs.

She has however asked Kenyans to be vigilant and to report any suspicious drugs in chemists.

 


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