Let's stop deaths from snake bites

Nearly 10,000 Kenyans die from snake bites every year, according to a survey by Doctors Without Borders. Some of those who survive may have their legs amputated or end up with permanent disabilities.

The problem is worsened by lack of access to treatment. Most of those affected are in rural areas and would need to trek many kilometres to access a health facility. And even when they get to hospital, if they do, the cost of treatment is beyond reach.

The cost of one vial of the antivenin needed to remove snake poison is about Sh10,000 and an adult may need up to six vials. This is beyond the reach of many Kenyans. In addition, most health facilities do not also stock it. The Government must work to stop deaths from snake bites.