So what really is the Community Health Services Kenya and why should anyone care about it? In Kenya, health has always been a very sensitive issue. That is why the government of Kenya has always had the Ministry of Health to help tackle the various challenges concerning health in the country. Many people around Kenya live below the poverty line and this exposes them to various health risks.
From the urban areas in Kenya to the most rural places, sanitation has always been a key concern. Access to health facilities has also been a major concern for many people in Kenya. The very few health facilities found around are usually ill equipped and never capable to handle all the issues concerning health in the area.
Many of the poor usually turn to alternative means to handle health issues. These means are not usually proven ones and more often worsen the situation. Something as basic as maternity has been a great challenge in the country. As much as the new government has made maternity services free, the manpower and equipment is insufficient to handle mothers. Cases of mothers delivering on the floor have become a reality with video footage being released to the media in some cases.
What has the Ministry of Health been doing?
All issues concerning health and sanitation in Kenya are under the ministry of health. The Ministry of health is responsible for providing quality health services to all Kenyans. However, we all know how this has always been a great challenge. However, this does not mean the Ministry of health in Kenya has totally failed in its function of providing health and sanitation to all citizens.
Functions of the Health Ministry in Kenya as defined by the state include
· Sanitation Policy.
· Preventive and Promotive Health Services.
· HIV/AIDS Programme and other Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) Treatment and Management.
· Health Education.
· Family Planning.
· Food and Food Handling.
· Health Inspection and other Public Health Services.
· Quarantine Administration.
· Overall Sanitary Services.
· Insanitary Nuisances.
· Curative Services.
· Clinics, Dispensaries, Health Centres and Hospitals.
· Registration of Doctors and Para Medicals.
· Maternity Services.
· Nurses and Midwives.
· National Hospital Insurance Fund.
· Kenya Medical Research Institute.*
· Kenya Medical Training College.
· Government Chemist.
· Kenya Medical Supplies Agency (KEMSA)
· The Radiation Protection Board.
· Regulatory Bodies for Pharmacy and Medicine.
In its quest to provide better health services, the Ministry of Health launched Community Health Services (CHS) Kenya.
What is Community Health Services Kenya?
Community Health Services was started by the Ministry of Health in Kenya to provide quality health services to all Kenyans. The difference is that CHS Kenya provides these health solutions at community level and therefore closer to the common mwananchi. The Community Health Services Kenya directs counties on how to establish Community Health Units with policies and guidelines that the CHS dictates.
Community Health Volunteers, Community Health Workers and Community Health Extension workers all work together in various counties to serve at most 5,000 people. The more the population in a county, the more Community Health Units formed. This ensures that all Kenyans regardless of his or her status has access to quality health services and sanitation.
The CHS Kenya also educates communities on the importance of sanitation and other aspects that contribute to better health. Access to information has always been a contributing factor that leads to various health hazards in our communities.
You can visit http://chs.health.go.ke for more information about CHS Kenya and how you can be a part of the Community Health Services Kenya. It is important that as Kenya grows issues like health will be a thing of the past. An ailing woman in Turkana does not have to die in silence not even knowing what is eating her up.
Community Health Services is a great initiative and it will sure drive Kenya towards better health for all Kenyans.