Kenyans will no longer walk into Kenyatta National Hospital "uninvited" beginning July according to the Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS).
Kenyans will no longer walk into Kenyatta National Hospital “uninvited” beginning July according to the Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS).
According to NMS Director-General Mohammed Badi, the move is in an effort to decongest the largest referral hospital in the region that has been receiving an overwhelming number of patients.
“In conjunction with the Ministry of Health, we have been able to produce a policy document on referral system in Kenya. Nairobi County will be used as a guinea pig as the first county to implement this strategy to ensure that KNH becomes a teaching and referral hospital only,” said Maj-Gen Badi on Wednesday.
Patients seeking medical attention will be required to visit other hospitals in the city. This includes 24 health facilities currently being managed by NMS. Plans to close KNH doors to walk-in patients were first revealed by Health CS Mutahi Kagwe.
“We are working hard to ensure that all the hospitals in informal settlements and disadvantaged areas are completed by the first of June and are operational by the end of June because the deadline for closure of KNH to walk-in patients is the first week of July,” said Badi.
At least 47 percent of patients who seek treatment at KNH are walk-ins and the government wants to make it solely for referrals and those who will walk in without a referral from July will be turned away.
“KNH is supposed to be a referral facility, taking care of cases that require specialized treatment from across the country, which is why it’s national. The hospital is supposed to support other lower facilities whenever they need advanced care support. Unfortunately, this has not been the case,” said Kagwe.