Pharmacies housed next to Kitale County Hospital put on notice over missing drugs

Trans Nzoia Deputy Governor Dr Stanley Tarus

Trans Nzoia Deputy Governor Dr Stanley Tarus said most of the drugs that are stolen from health facilities in the region end up in some of the private pharmacies in a racket that involves some county health personnel

By Sirengo Namasaka

The county government of Trans Nzoia may soon restrict proprietors of pharmacies from operating close to public hospitals as one way of containing the sale of drugs meant for use at the facilities.

Deputy Governor Dr Stanley Tarus said most of the drugs that are stolen from the health facilities in the region end up in some of the private pharmacies in a racket that involves some health personnel.

“We are looking at the possibility of coming up with a law that will give directions on the radius within which a private pharmacy should be located close to a public health facility,” said Dr Tarus.

The North Rift’s KEMSA regional manager Zacheus Lutomia said the ongoing reforms at the firm has seen it boost its delivery in terms of making deliveries unlike in the past where delays were experienced

The deputy county boss made the remarks while receiving a Ksh 54.7 million consignment of drugs and non-pharmaceuticals delivered by the Kenya Medical Supplies Agency (KEMSA) to the devolved unit.

“We had made an order of Ksh 64.9 million from KEMSA, the delivery that has been made today amounts to 82% which will be very instrumental since this will benefit approximately 1 million patients,” Tarus told The Weekly Vision online. The drugs supplied include antibiotics, analgesics and cold-chain items such as insulin.

The North Rift’s KEMSA regional manager Zacheus Lutomia said the ongoing reforms at the firm has seen it boost its delivery in terms of making deliveries unlike in the past where delays were experienced. “We can assure the residents of Trans Nzoia we will deliver the remaining order in due course to address the shortage. We are aware that the availability of drugs is instrumental in containing diseases,” said Mr Lutomia.

The county’s health executive committee member Claire Wanyama has in the meantime called on residents who are yet to get the Covid 19 vaccination to visit the nearest health facilities to be vaccinated.

“We wish to have many residents vaccinated to boost their immunity and resilience against the Covid 19 pandemic which has affected every part of the country. This will boost our war against the pandemic,” said Mrs Wanyama. Area residents have in the past blamed clinicians working in public hospitals for selling drugs acquire from KEMSA to unsuspecting members of the public.

Centre for the restoration of human rights and democracy executive director said those found selling government drugs in privately owned chemists should be apprehended. Wanyama said that the department of health was performing dismally because those picked to oversee the management of the health had no medical background.

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