NAIROBI, Kenya, May 2 – HIV prevalence in Nairobi has reduced from 6.1 per cent to 5.9 per cent within the last three years.
Nairobi County Health Executive Mohamed Dagane attributed this to the implementation of the Program Quality and Efficiency (PQE) project in partnership with the Global Fund.
PQE is a two-year project funded by the Global Fund and implemented by National AIDS STI Control Program together with the Ministry of Health to demonstrate quality and efficiency in the implementation of Differentiated Care in 70 facilities across seven pilot counties including Nairobi, Kisumu, Vihiga, Nakuru, Homabay, Mombasa and Kwale.
The project aims at achieving much with minimal resources and at the same time reducing the burden on health systems through implementation of differentiated care through a quality improvement approach.
In Nairobi County, the project is being implemented at Mbagathi Hospital and nine other health facilities.
Since 2002, the Global Fund has signed grants with Kenya worth more than Sh1.4 trillion.
Speaking at Mbagathi Hospital on Thursday, Dagane said Nairobi residents are now getting better health services despite the myriad of challenges the county faces due to insufficient funding from the national government.
“As a result of this we can say Mbagathi (Hospital) is one of the Centres of Excellence,” said Dagane.
He spoke during the visit of Global Fund Executive Director Peter Sands to the facility to see the progress of the PQE project.
Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko who was also present said the Global Fund has been an invaluable partner to both the national and the Nairobi City County Government and has helped reduce the impact of HIV, TB and Malaria.
Through the PQE project, he said, the county can strive to serve Nairobi residents with the minimal resources available.
“Mbagathi Level Four Hospital serves a catchment population of more than three million people. In the outpatient department alone, the HIV clinic serves about 5,000 active patients, with an average workload of approximately 80-120 clients per day. Health services in Kenya have improved significantly over the last few years, but a lot still needs to be done,” said Sonko.
He noted that child mortality rate has gone down and there has been improvement in prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV.
“In Nairobi, we have rolled out new programmes like the Kangaroo care where mothers use their body heat to incubate babies, and the first human milk bank in the region, that is saving the lives of thousands of babies who do not have access to their mothers’ breast milk,” said the governor.
He attributed the success of such initiative to the PQE concept which he said he borrowed.
“However, problems of lack of capacity continue because we still receive more clients than our facilities can accommodate,” he said.
Understaffing remains the county’s biggest challenge in the health sector resulting in doctors, nurses, clinical officers are other staff working for extended hours.
“We need support to improve our 103 smaller health centres, so that we can reduce the pressure on our four hospitals of Pumwani, Mbagathi, Mama Lucy, and Mutuini, as well as on Kenyatta National Hospital,” Sonko said.
HIV preventive measures have improved from 47 per cent ion 2002 to 90 per cent in 2019 in Nairobi, according to Sonko.
Mbagathi Hospital is the second largest HIV care facility in the country after Kenyatta National Hospital.