Governor Nyong'o steps up efforts to respond to sickle cell

Lab technologists during routine clinical research at Kombewa Clinical Research centre in Seme Kisumu county. [Collins Oduor, Standard]

Kisumu residents will benefit from a hematological and sickle cell centre that the county government plans to put up.

The centre to be used for early diagnosis of sickle cell to save lives is part of the strategy by the county to reduce the disease burden.

Governor Anyang Nyong'o said the initiative is part of his flagship projects.

"I want to ensure before my term as a governor comes to an end, I will leave you with a proper hematological and sickle cell center," he announced while addressing residents in Nyakach.

Kisumu is one of the counties with the highest burden of the disease, with statistics indicating that about 21 out of 100 children are born with the sickle-cell.

Already, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital (JOOTRH) has rolled out an ambitious strategy to help patients build resilience.

The facilities have formed several support groups to help patients learn and share their experiences on better-coping mechanisms. The groups are formed according to clusters of zero to eight years old.

The devolved unit has also rolled out the Marwa Kisumu Solidarity Health Cover to cushion sickle cell patients from the high cost of treatment.

Each patient covered by the program is entitled to Sh3600 annually and will only pay Sh2400 annually. The monthly pay under Marwa is Sh500 for each patient.

According to Nyong'o's administration, 67 people living with sickle cell have already registered in the medical scheme.

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