People living with disabilities in Trans Nzoia County have threatened to paralyze business activities in Kitale town if the department of health does not address the biting challenge of acute shortage of medicines within one week.
Speaking to K24 Digital, Tom Juma, a resident of Waitaluk ward, said a majority of Trans Nzoia people living with disabilities have been denied the right to affordable healthcare.
A disappointed Juma said Kitale county Referral pharmacy is now empty forcing patients to source medicines from private chemists at an exorbitant cost.
“Health is a basic right to every Kenyan however. We are perturbed that in Trans Nzoia County the poor who can’t afford to buy even medicine are left to die,” said Juma.
He expressed concern that as much as they remit money to the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) every month, they don’t benefit from the cover since they’re forced to buy medicines from private chemists.
He called on the Members of Trans Nzoia County Assembly to summon the Health CEC Claire Wanyama and Chief Officer Engineer Charles Barasa to explain how the money meant for medicines was used.
“We should not take health matters lightly and we are telling MCAs to do their oversight role as required. Health CEC and Chief Officer must be put to task” Juma added.
Om his part Josphat Barasay, a resident of Tuwan slums, who is visually impaired called on the county government to employ more X-ray specialists to make the services more accessible.
“We are shocked that X-ray services are offered once per week in Kitale County Referral Hospital, this is dangerous, Barasa said.
Barasa who is also a Human Rights Defender said failing to provide affordable healthcare to the people of Trans Nzoia amounts to a gross violation of the constitution of Kenya.
“Article 43, of the constitution guarantees every Kenyan right to the highest attainable standards of health. Here this provision is violated,” he added.
The health department leadership did not respond to our questions on this crisis.
Kitale County Referral Hospital serves a population of close to one million people from five sub-counties and neighbouring counties.