County governments in Kenya have enabled the central national government to disperse economic resources and spearhead county-based development projects to all the counties. This constitutional pillar has seen sectors such as Health grow in service delivery and efficiency.
On April 13th 2016, His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta commissioned the medical complex at Gatundu level 4 hospital and various modern day medical equipment at Kiambu Level 4 Hospital as well.
Two of our Master in Business Administration, Healthcare Management (MBA-HCM) students, Dr. David Kariuki and Dr. Patrick Nyagah, were honored with the Presidential flagship of the construction development projects in their respective hospitals.
Meet Dr. David Kariuki, Head of Public Service at Kiambu level 4 hospital and Dr. Patrick Nyagah, Surgeon and Hospital Manager, Gatundu level 4 hospital, as they share their experiences in managing healthcare developmental projects at the county level.
The renovation to the theaters and the provision of modern day equipment has granted our facility the capability to serve more patients effectively.
The flagship by the president included the commissioning of an MRI, a Digital Imaging X-Ray machine, and a new Theatre wing.
With the new advancements on the Digital Imaging equipment, we are now able to conduct X-Rays within a span of less than 5 minutes, which two years ago, the exercise would have even exceeded half an hour.
We are also able to attend to more patients due to the reduced waiting time. Before the renovation patients would often leave unattended to.
The developments in the Theaters have reduced the rate of referrals to other hospitals. When we have the services delivered at our facilities, they become cheaper to the patients and thus reducing the cost of treatment.
Public service is at the heart of nation building, needless to say that when we see developments in county health systems, we are optimistic that the country is headed to the right direction.
Key take away lessons
I have been able to consolidate my managerial skills to focus and prioritise on key projects which are in most need of the available resources.
Dr. Patrick Nyagah
We have had two major construction renovation projects, alongside other management restructuring projects within the hospital. The President came to inaugurate the Medical complex, a project that has taken us two years to complete. The medical complex has several features and services such as; an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) with a capacity second to Kenyatta National Hospital, 4 modern operating theaters which ensure that infections spreading through air are minimized, a new maternity wing and an increase in the number of medical equipment such as new CT Scans and Digital X Rays. Through the project we have been able to add in a capacity of 100 beds, a new accident and emergency center, operations and diagnostic centers.
It has been a long journey characterised with long arrays of negotiations, evaluations, reviews and coordination. Concepts taught in class such as people management and negotiation skills eased the difficulties encountered during the execution of the project. It is important for doctors to enhance their management skills through such programs.
Devolving Health Institutions
Devolution is equal to bringing development to the county level. However, proper structures and policies need to be developed so as to strengthen county based public institutions.
Counties are beginning to understand what it means to have the power of owning their health institutions. Public participation has improved translating to better services. Devolution has given us the freedom to make a lot of local decisions, resulting to allocating resources to the most deserving projects.