The Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union has said the health sector needs a commission just like their counterparts in the teaching profession.
Speaking on Wednesday during a breakfast meeting with the Senate Committee on Health, KMPDU Secretary General Ouma Oluga said this will help in addressing various issues the workers face.
Oluga said it will also avert unnecessary strikes emanating from minor issues.
“We have held enough meetings. What we want now is action. We are not against devolution. Time has come for the country to consider a one-stop health commission with thematic issues like HIV becoming departments. The commission would operate in a similar manner to the land commission and co-exist with the line ministry,” Oluga said.
Oluga further called on nurses and doctors to be ambassadors of preaching about Universal Health coverage because they too are also consumers or have families that should benefit from the same.
He said health-care should be everyone’s business.
“Sixty-seven per cent of people who seek medical attention can’t afford quality health care. Some have to pay from their pockets and they cant even afford to do so. Nurses, for instance, develop back problems due to their work and have to seek medical attention. People out there can’t buy the notion of UHC if you as practitioners are speaking ill against the initiative,” he added.
He, however, maintained that it is wrong for the government to import doctors from Cuba yet more than 1,000 doctors are trained in the country annually. He said this is a wastage of resources.
Present during the meeting were Meru county Woman Rep Florence Kajuju, Senate health committee chair Michael Mbito (Trans Nzoia senator), committee vice chair Ali Abdullahi (Wajir senator) and Laikipia senator John Kinyua.