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Protests impacting Kenya’s healthcare sector: KMPDU expresses concerns

The ongoing anti-government protests in Kenya have taken a toll on the country’s healthcare sector, leading to an increase in the number of patients seeking emergency care, according to the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Union (KMPDU).

The lobby group has expressed serious concerns over the impact of these protests on the already overwhelmed health centers.

KMPDU Secretary General, Davji Atella, condemned the actions of the police, stating that their actions during the protests have resulted in injuries that require medical attention.

Consequently, hospitals are grappling with an influx of patients, stretching their limited resources even further.

“The demonstrations have caused injuries that end up in the hospitals that are already overwhelmed. We want to condemn the actions of the police causing a lot of these cases,” Atella asserted.

Also read: KMPDU boss Davji Atellah and governor Nyong’o clash over health workers delayed salaries

The situation is exacerbated by the lack of essential drugs and manpower in the healthcare facilities.

Atella lamented that the government’s inadequate investment in the healthcare sector has left hospitals ill-equipped to handle the surge in patients, leading to a rise in fatalities.

“The hospitals that these patients end up in lack drugs and manpower because the government has not invested in healthcare. Hence, we end up with a lot of deaths from these injuries,” he added.

KMPDU has reported that the disruptions caused by the protests have forced some healthcare facilities to shut down, further limiting access to healthcare services for the public.

A statement released by the union highlighted the potential consequences of reduced accessibility to healthcare services, warning that the timely treatment and management of diseases and conditions could be severely affected, potentially endangering lives.

In addition to the impact on patient care, KMPDU has expressed serious concerns for the safety of its members and support staff.

With medical practitioners facing threats and attacks, the fear of violence has led to fears of understaffing, which could further compromise the delivery of essential medical services.

The union is calling for authorities to ensure the safety of healthcare professionals and to address the underlying issues behind the protests. They stress the urgency of resolving the situation to prevent further harm to both the healthcare sector and the general public.

Also read: KMPDU reject Ruto’s plan to increase tax in NHIF reforms