Corruption: Curb graft to achieve UHC, say sponsors

Thursday, August 15th, 2019 00:00 |
Health Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki. PHOTO/FILE

Kenya must address corruption in the health sector if it hopes to achieve universal healthcare coverage (UHC), donors have said. 

Despite the gains made in the pilot phase of UHC, donors observed that the business-as-usual approach to the management of health sector is undermining progress.

Speaking during the opening session of the Kenya Health Forum 2019, Development Partners in Kenya chairperson Tessa Mattholie said Kenya has no option but to address rampant corruption in the health sector if it hopes to achieve UHC.

Reduce reliance

“The government needs to make better use of the resources at her disposal and start to address corruption issues more directly,” said Mattholie,  who is also the Basic Services Leader in charge of human and social development group at the Department for International Development (DFID).

Other issues the government needs to address for UHC to succeed is raising allocations to the health sector and paying more attention to the welfare of health workers.

 It should also reduce reliance on financial help from development partners, who contribute 20 per cent of the funds needed to address health issues in the country.

“We need to start seeing money flowing down to the counties. Similarly, we need to see Kenya raising its national allocation from her Gross Domestic Product (GDP) incomes to above two per cent, if all these interventions in the health sector are going to be achieved,” she said.

Health Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki said the government had made tremendous strides in the UHC in the first 100 days of its pilot project aimed at determining the most suitable and sustainable approach to ensuring all Kenyans access good quality health services, through a doubling of county health budgets.

“We recorded tremendous success as reported by both the citizens and the health providers,” she told the meeting.

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