Kenya calls for enhanced global partnerships to address emerging health problems

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Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe calls for enhanced global partnerships to address emerging health challenges better.

Addressing members of the diplomatic corps on Wednesday, during the 18th ambassadors and high commissioners' conference, the health CS said Kenya remains ready to collaborate with its international partners to improve health outcomes.

He said the country has partnered with global allies in technology transfer, training and research as it seeks to enhance its capacity and reform the health sector.

"What we are now interested in is scholarships in order to up skill our people for specialisation. We have a good relationship with the Christie Foundation and the University of Manchester in the UK. We would like more in other countries, and you can help us in this regard." He told the diplomats.

However, he said that Kenya will not allow itself to be a dumping ground for retired technologies.

"Kenya will no longer accept second-hand equipment. If someone is generous, let them not give us what is being replaced. There's no generosity in giving what they will throw away anyway." Said the health CS.

Thanking the diplomatic community for supporting Kenya in dealing with the challenge posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, Kagwe said the country has now developed its capacity to better deal with emergencies by putting in place the elaborate infrastructure to address similar challenges.

"At the onset of Covid-19, we had 8 infectious beds at Mbagathi hospital. We responded fast, and I can report that every county now has at least double what we had. From zero, we have built 110 laboratories for testing Covid-19. During the period, we increased our sequencing to 5 labs. We had capacity for a few samples before, but now we can do up to 2,500 per week." Observed the health CS.

According to Kagwe, the developments are part of ongoing efforts spearheaded by President Uhuru Kenyatta to enhance access, affordability and quality in line with the Universal Health Coverage agenda.

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