Three children in Kisumu County are in need of specialized treatment after a team of medical experts discovered that each of them has a hole in the heart. The children aged 10 years and below were among 1000 residents of Manyatta slums who benefitted from free medical services last week. Organized by Uhuru Community Development Program (UCDP) and a German NGO, Armut und Gesundheit (Dentist for Africa together with Poverty and Health) the programs target the poor in society. The NGO’s Chairman Prof. Gerhard Trabert said it was unfortunate that the poor in Kenya still have to pay for basic health services. Prof. Trabert said in Germany such services are free and urged stakeholders in the health sector in Kenya to pool resources to bailout the poor in society. UCDP Executive Director, Davies Okombo said Kenya has not yet achieved the SDG 3 which requires that no one should be left behind in development and access to quality health. Okombo urged the government to expand its budgetary allocation for the health sector in order to attain Universal Health Care (UHC) in all the 47 counties. ‘This will greatly reduce the high cost of medical care through implementing the social protection program,’ Okombo argued. The Director took issue with private hospitals that charge exorbitant fees to the extent that they commercialize health services and detain indefinitely patients who fail to pay. Okombo challenged them to instead strive to supplement government efforts to deliver quality health services to members of the public. Prof. Trabert who is renowned for saving illegal immigrants marooned on the seas while crossing into Germany said every life including those in the slums of Manyatta matters. The don who is himself a medical doctor opposed those pushing for closing of German borders to lockout immigrants terming this inhuman acts. Having emerged second in the last German Presidential elections, Prof. Trabert said he fully supports the President but continues challenging policies frustrating provision of quality health services. ‘Most wealth in Germany emanated from Africa which is now considered as poor. Perhaps it’s time for us to pay back in kind,’ he declared. We may have wronged African people by taking away their valuable resources but we now have a chance to correct the past through close collaboration in various sectors, explained the medic. The NGO operates in Africa, Asia and Europe fighting poverty while promoting quality health services among other programs. ‘It’s our duty to help since poverty levels in Africa is alarming and largely attributed to having been impoverished by Europeans and so we need atonement for this,’ he said. Prof. Trabert called for fair trade agreements as opposed to lopsided ones that only benefited one side but not Africa. He said it was unfortunate that Europe at one time stopped funding development in Africa but now there is a deliberate action to bridge the gap. The NGO also targets Persons Living with Disabilities or the handicapped in Syria, Northern Ireland, Turkey, Greece and Laos Island who lack toilet facilities and other basic needs.
Source: Kenya News Agency