Governor Wainguru flags off the Community Health Promoters in Kirinyaga
Thursday, November 16, 2023
KNA by David Wandeto
Kirinyaga County Governor Anne Waiguru on Wednesday flagged off 1,205 Community Health Promoters (CHPs) in a bid to strengthen the provision of primary healthcare.
At the same time, she distributed 854 kits that contained essential commodities that would enable them to deliver services in their respective communities.
Speaking at Kerugoya County Referral Hospital grounds the governor said that the CHP programme will help reduce the number of patients seeking healthcare services in hospitals.
Waiguru said the rollout of CHPs, which is targeted to be a national-wide program, will complement the Kirinyaga County government’s effort to transform the healthcare sector in the county.
She said the promoters will be able to deal with minor ailments at early stages that do not require a referral, hence achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC) goals.
She said CHPs form a critical component of healthcare service delivery in the county since they are the first point of contact for patients in the community. She noted that they play a critical role in the provision of primary healthcare, and each Community Health Promoter (CHP) will be in charge of 100 households comprised of about 500 individuals and will be linked to a health facility nearest to the community that they are serving.
She noted that by taking health services closer to the people, communities can identify their health priorities and participate in the planning and delivery of services, thus playing an active role in maintaining their health and well-being.
She added that services provided by CHPs will help in reducing the number of people visiting the level four and five hospitals, thus reducing congestion in those facilities.
“The red bags our CHPs are carrying, have a weighing scale, both for adults and for children, a clinical thermometer, and measuring tape to measure something like the length of the child’s they also have a blood pressure machine, a blood sugar machine, and a medicine box for intervention, not for very serious illnesses. CHPs will also receive tablets to enable them to document, store, and relay important data about every person they have seen,” she said.
Wainguru also added many of these CHP officers have been working as health volunteers, but under the current arrangement, they will each be receiving a Sh. 5,000 monthly stipend that will enable them to cater for some of the work logistics.
She noted that the Kirinyaga government and the national government are working together to put in place sound health systems that ensure everyone can access affordable, comprehensive care ranging from disease prevention to treatment, and rehabilitation.
Due to constant public health education, mainly by CHPs, there has been a gradual decline in diseases such as malaria and waterborne diseases in the county.
“Kirinyaga County is focused on developing a good health network facilities at the grassroots, has recently opened nine new dispensaries, and is in the process of opening others. Some of the recently opened dispensaries include Matandara, Riakithiga Laboratory, South Ngariama, Kamwana, Kiamwathi, Kianjiru, Umoja, Kiaumbui, and Joshua Mbai Laboratory, and the recent upgrading of Kerugoya County Referral Hospital from Level 4 to Level 5,” she said.