:: to the teeth ::    thoughts on social justice, medicine, race, hope and beats

"Another world is not only possible, she is on her way.
On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing." :: Arundhati Roy ::

"The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any." :: Alice Walker ::
Wednesday, March 08, 2006  

Refreshing talk back in Kenya
Ignore the World Bank on health, says minister
By Elizabeth Mwai
The Standard

Kenya should ignore donor restrictions and employ health workers needed urgently countrywide, an assistant minister has said.

The country needs 10,000 health workers to offer improved services, Health assistant minister Enock Kibunguchy said.

"We have to put our foot down and employ. We can tell the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to go to hell," Kibunguchy said.

Speaking at an Aids workshop in Nairobi on Monday, Kibunguchy said the Government should ignore the freeze imposed by the World Bank and IMF.

He said 7,000 nurses, 600 doctors and 2,000 clinicians and laboratory experts were urgently needed in various health centres.

Kibunguchy said over 1,000 nurses leave the country every year yet the Government cannot hire more.

He said about 130,000 infants born yearly to HIV-positive mothers were not being cared for effectively for lack of medical staff. He said the scaling up of the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV could only be achieved if there was adequate personnel and infrastructure.
Right on -- refreshing that the assistant health minister's standin' up for the people in Kenya. So...why exactly are the World Bank and the IMF lending money to Kenya with the tradeoff of a freeze in numbers of health workers? And where are the healthcare workers worldwide talking about and organizing against such conditions in loans? Something to think about. Healthgap an PHR have done some great work in these arenas, check out Healthgap's resources on "health systems capacity" -- big words for let's put our feet down and employ, empower.
-anjali

posted by Anjali Taneja | 3/08/2006 06:58:00 PM | |


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