‘Plan to revert health services to national government ill-informed’
Devolution of Health services is a Constitutional issue which cannot be tackled every time there is a crisis in the sector, an expert has said.
The chairman of the Nyeri County Health Services Committee Stephen Mwaniki says the country has made great strides after devolution of health care to the counties including giving Kenyans a sense of ownership of their health centres.
“It is not going to solve anything if we take back the health services to the National government,” Mwaniki said in his column published by the Standard.
“Instead we should resolve the challenges that present themselves even as we implement devolution. Let us move forward with a positive attitude.”
He said Kenyans must accept the fact that there are challenges with the system adding that the relationship between the health service provider and the employer need to be re-evaluated to ensure there is mutual respect.
There have been calls that health service provision should be reverted to the National government.
Proponents of this move argue that governors have failed in managing one of Kenya’s most important sectors.
Health workers since 2013 have held a series of strikes demanding for salary increases claiming they are underpaid by counties.
Nurses called for their strike on Monday last week demanding for the implementation of a Collective Bargaining Agreement they signed with the government.
The strike came about three months after doctors called off their strike which lasted for 100 days over a 300 percent pay rise.
“A national health committee would come in handy at this point because it would address key human resource issues such as inter-county transfers that are affecting the morale of health workers,” Mwaniki said.
“There is also poor management structure in place that has affected the working relationship between counties and health workers and this can only be resolved by the national committee.”