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US to fund Sh320m health programme in Isiolo, Kajiado.

The United States will roll out an ambitious Sh320 million health programme in Isiolo and Kajiado.

Ambassador Kyle McCarter said they will provide medical supplies and equipment and support training of health workers. He spoke when he inspected a state-of-the-art laboratory at the Isiolo County Referral Hospital.

The Sh45 million facility was built and equipped by the US State Department of Defense through a partnership with the county government and the Biological Threat Reduction Program.

McCarter said the programme will be actualised through cooperation between Colorado State University and the University of Nairobi over five years.

"The United States of America and Kenya are conducting research on pathogens that threaten both human beings and livestock, including Ebola, Anthrax and Rift Valley fever, with a view to coming up with a lasting solution to the problem," he said.

He said the Isiolo programme is just one of five initiatives set to be funded by Americans in addition to similar partnerships and support for Kajiado county, the Kenya Medical Research Institute, the Central Veterinary Laboratory in Kabete, and the Kenya Vaccine Production Institute.

Isiolo Governor Mohamed Kuti thanked the US for its continued support through life-changing projects and programmes. He cited the modern lab at the hospital as a major milestone and a game-changer that has greatly reduced referrals to facilities in other counties through accurate diagnoses of ailments.

"The lab is not only serving Isiolo residents but also those from neighbouring counties, with several people now flocking the county referral hospital in search of the crucial services," he said.

The demand for lab services at the facility has risen suddenly and the county has had to increase the number of technicians from the initial six to 17, recruiting 11 more in order to adequately address the shortage.

Kuti said the lab has enabled laboratory technology students at the Isiolo KMTC campus to attain high-level training using the best equipment and adequate space.

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Publication:The Star (Nairobi, Kenya)
Date:Aug 26, 2019
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