Meeting with the head of the Global Fund Mark Edington, Kenyan president Elect Uhuru Kenyatta has reaffirmed his commitment to ensuring that Kenya’s Medical Supplies Agency (KEMSA) is reformed and remains a world-class medical supplier.
Marketing their proven record in dealing with international donors like KEMSA, President Kenyatta intends on maintaining these strong ties for years to come as he begins work repairing this crucial part of government infrastructure.
The Global Fund’s Ksh.48 billion grant will help Kenya to address HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis; programs that have had some success in the country thanks largely due to donor funding.
The Ksh.48 billion boost by the Global Fund this time round is to cater for the programs through 2021 to 2024.
“We hope to achieve comprehensive prevention, treatment and care for people infected with HIV, TB, leprosy, lung disease, as well as reduce malaria incidents by at least 75% of the 216 levels by 2023,” said Health Chief Administrative Secretary Dr. Rashid Aman.
Amref Health Africa Group CEO Dr. Githinji Gitahi, on his part, said: “Community health services are the ones that actually make these grants work, whether its HIV, TB, malaria…community health services are critical towards achieving Universal Health Coverage.”
441.5 million dollars will be distributed to the recipients, and some of it will go towards HIV/AIDs prevention such as $294 million for National Treasury; Amref Health Africa with a total of $70 million being allocated specifically for TB and malaria in Kenya while another 76 millions going to Kenya Red Cross Society’s program on HIV
The money which amounts to 441.5million USD is set up so that different portions would be given out by specific entities including The National Treasury who are issued with 294Million Dollars ($US)for programs related to AIDS initiatives like AID’s treatment among other things- about 70 Million US$ earmarked only for programs concerning tuberculosis (TB) & Malaria care in Kenyan society plus
“We urge the National Treasury, as the principal recipient of the Global Fund, to ensure timely disbursement of funds for purposes of timely implementation of these critical activities,” said Council of Governors Chairman Martin Wambora.
Mark Edington, the head at the Global Fund, however had some concerns about the state of KEMSA saying:
“It is important that we have commitment as a government in the ongoing reforms at the Kenya Medical Supplies Agency. We request the government to pay urgent attention and put in place mitigation measures to procure equipment and drugs occasioned by the delays. We will be reaching out to the Auditor General to obtain clarification on the auditing process.”
After the ARV medication donated by USAID was stuck at the Mombasa port since January, KEMSA had to deal with a lack of confidence from their largest donor. The delay in providing this vital drug saw many people living with HIV switch up their medications and schedules in order to manage without it for as long as they could survive.