Do not carry basin, cotton wool when going to deliver, mums urged
Most expectant women put a lot of thought into what to carry to hospital when they go to deliver. But Medical Services director Jackson Kioko (pictured) says they should no longer carry basins, medical gloves and cotton wool. He says health facilities must stock these items in advance and stop burdening mothers-to-be. “The funds we transfer to hospitals under the free maternity programme should be enough and no woman should go to hospital carrying gloves, cotton wool or razor blades,” he said. The government has sent Sh898 million to all public health facilities to cover deliveries for three months. The funds cover all the expenses any health facility incurs to provide natural births and Caesarian sections. “They cover everything a pregnant woman needs,” Kioko said at the State House Health Summit on Tuesday. The Free Maternity Care Programme was launched in 2013 as a conditional grant, meaning hospitals would get reimbursed after conducting deliveries. Every hospital is paid Sh5,000 for every natural delivery while health centres receive Sh2,500. Before the programme started, women would carry nearly all the medical essentials. They would also be forced to buy drugs and injection needles. Health PS Nicholas Muraguri says the programme has increased access to skilled delivery. “This programme was launched by the President three years ago and has significantly reduced maternal-child deaths,” he said.