Kenya has commenced construction works of US $2.3m maternity hospital in Bungoma County. Governor Wycliffe Wangamati performed the ground breaking ceremony of the development.
The project aims to decongest the Bungoma County Referral Hospital which faces a shortage of beds, therefore, forcing residents to seek alternative services in private hospitals which are costly to the common citizen.
The facility will be a five-story building with two lifts and will have three theatres, ante-natal clinic, a pediatric ward, administrative offices, and doctor’s consultation rooms. It is set to have a capacity of 300 beds.
“Provision of quality healthcare has always been limited by three critical factors; personnel, infrastructure and drugs. We hope to sort out the issue of space especially for our mothers and the new-borns once the new maternity complex is completed in 12 months’ time,” said Gov Wangamati.
Upon completion, the facility will also help to reduce infant and maternal deaths due to the widespread practice of home births. According to Health Executive Antony Walela, the referral hospitals in Bungoma and Webuye handle 600 and 400 births respectively every month, ranking the county third behind Nairobi and Kakamega in hospital deliveries.
Dr Walela added that the county was paying a stipend to 3,256 community health volunteers to promote primary healthcare and t the number of women delivering under the care of skilled health workers had risen from 35% in 2015 to 72% last year.