August 16th 2017

Society / Health & Science

Nurses, technicians want recognition in Health Bill

Professionals in the health industry have called for a review of the Health Bill, 2016, which is intended to regulate the healthcare sector in Kenya.

By Winfred Mbuya Mwanikiwmwaniki@kenyafreepress.comThursday, 16 Jun 2016 16:31 EAT

Professionals in the health industry have called for a review of the Health Bill, 2016, which is intended to regulate the healthcare sector in Kenya. The workers, including nurses, technologists and technicians, say the Bill favours doctors at the expense of other professionals.

The Bill proposes to introduce an intergovernmental coordination mechanism comprised of only doctors. The National Nurses Association of Kenya led a protest yesterday to highlight the grievances by nurses, who say they provide 90 percent of healthcare services in the country. They eventually gave the views to a committee of the Senate that was holding a public hearing on the Bill at KICC.

The Secretary General Kenya Health Professionals Society, Moses Lorre, said the bill does not provide a clear structure on cooperation and coordination between the nation government, county government and other stakeholders.

“If the bill is enacted into the law, the KHPS will immediately call for downing of tools of all until all contentious issues are fully addressed,” he warned.

While other health professionals say the Bill favours doctors, doctors have their own issues with the Bill. For example, they want a provision that doctors who fail to provide emergency treatment to patients be expunged from the Bill. The doctors argue that hospitals, and not the professionals, make decisions on how to admit and treat patients.

The Bill provides new progressive protections for health professionals, including rights such as the right not to be unfairly discriminated against on the account of their health status.

The Bill would also bring all healthcare regulation, such as over medical practice, pharmaceutical practice and medical laboratory science under one roof.

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