Lamu Archipelago Hospitals Being Upgraded

Faza hospital and Witu health centre are among several health facilities in the Lamu archipelago being upgraded by the county government.

The devolved unit is also collaborating with the national government to overhaul and refurbish mother and child care facilities across the archipelago designing them to support the well-being and recovery of expectant mothers and their new born babies.

The state of the art health equipment at the Faza level four hospital and the Witu health centre in Lamu East and West constituencies respectively would enable the island dwellers access health facilities in an efficient and appropriate manner.

Lamu Governor Issa Timamy says in an interview that his administration has expended Sh. 100 million in the construction of department of radiology and imaging, construction of operating theatre equipped with latest technology and digital x-ray unit for the first time in the Faza.

The department of pediatric radiology is expected to provide a full range of imaging services for newborns, infants, children and pregnant women.

Timamy says the facilities will enable islanders get medical attention without traveling to Lamu King Fahad level 5 Hospial for specialized treatment.

The county boss says the investment in the health sector is expected to bring down maternal deaths in the coastal county.

He says health coverage will remain the primary goal of his administration and as a result would ‘continue to increase access to health services by expanding and upgrading a number of health facilities in the county’.

‘We are committed to reducing child mortality and improving maternal health and that is why we are spending 40 per cent our budget on the sector’ he said adding that before the inception of devolution the child mortality rate stood at 70 per cent which has now been reduced to 30 per cent.

He says with the construction of a new theatre and x-ray machines the Witu health centre would be upgraded into a sub-county hospital.

‘This will reduce referral cases to Mpeketoni sub-county and the King Fahad hospitals as well as workload’ said the governor in an interview adding that Faza and Witu hospitals will receive Sh. 50 million for modernization.

David Katana the Faza hospital administrator has emphasized the need for having such facilities within the hospital reckoning that patients seeking specialized treatment travel to King Fahad hospital, the county’s referral hospital by boat.

‘In the past island dwellers who required surgery had to travel to Lamu’s King Fahad Hospital and this new theatre is a great step forward in solving the health problems of Faza residents and surrounding islands in the archipelago’ said Katana.

He went on ‘with this pioneering project many lives would be saved’.

According to him, the new facilities will significantly cut down the number of referral cases from Faza and surrounding fishing villages to the King Fahad hospital which is an hour away by boat ride.

The officer in-charge of Faza hospital Daniel Chege says the new facility will avail the residents of Faza and surrounding areas affordable, accessible and quality healthcare services at their doorstep.

The officer-in-charge of Witu health centre Benson Mwarabu welcomed the Sh.10 million upgrades adding that the impact of the projects will have on the residents cannot be overstated.

‘The upgrade will no doubt reduce the burden on the community for having to travel long distances in a bid to access healthcare services including emergency obstetric care, diagnostic services and 24 hour accident and emergency services’ said Mwarabu.

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