280,000 households registered for UHC in Machakos County ahead of official launch
By Lilian Kaivilu
Machakos County is among the four pilot counties for universal health coverage programme to be launched by the president on Thursday. The county was selected in the pilot phase to assess the country’s readiness to respond to emergencies arising from road traffic accidents. In readiness for the UHC pilot phase, the county has 70 ambulances to cater for these accidents as well as emergencies of patients in need of referral.
According to the Machakos County Executive Committee member for health and sanitation Ruth Mutua, the county has also procured five advanced life saving ambulances with cardiac equipment, each at a cost of Sh9millon. “We are well prepared for any emergencies as a county. We have also trained people who can handle emergencies across the 40 wards in the county,” she said.
So far, more than 280,000 households have been registered for the UHC pilot programme. The registration that was done using the M-tiba mobile application targeted 300,000 households in the county. “ As a county government, we have already renovated 32 health centres across the county. We have also employed over 700 staff including doctors, nurses, clinical officers and nutritionists,” said Mutua.
The minister added that the county has already procured 100 pieces of sanduku la daktari triage kits that will be placed in all outpatient health facilities in the county. The kits will also be used by nurses and when going for outreach services in the communities.
Last week, the county, in collaboration with the national government’s community health strategy department completed a 10-day training programme for community health workers from 250 community health units. According to Mutua, the county is now finalizing on a bill to guide the remuneration procedures for community health workers in the region.
Mutua expressed optimism that the pilot phase would be a success. The county is expecting about Sh800m from the central government for the pilot phase. “The rest will be coming from the county. That is why we have increased our budget allocation for health in the next financial year,” she said.