Patients in Kirinyaga Sent Away After Interns Resign

Source:The Star


Patients ran amok at Kirinyaga County Hospital after they were sent away without receiving treatment following resignation of 23 clinical officer interns on Monday afternoon.

The interns resigned over claims that the county government has refused to pay their internship allowance. The national government devolved healthcare to the counties.

Kirinyaga Governor Joseph Ndathi during a tour of the hospital yesterday said Health ministry should have notified his county in writing that the interns were to be paid.

Ndathi said the county wage bill is 50 per cent of its allocations and if they pay the interns it will shoot to 60 per cent. Patients who went to seek treatment as early as 7am remained unattended to the whole day.

Lucy Nyawira, a patient, said she arrived at the hospital at 8am but did not receive any care because the interns locked themselves in the treatment rooms.

Nyawira said they were first informed that the medics would go for a 15 minutes break before starting treatment. She said time elapsed and after hours of waiting they were told the interns needed to take their lunch break.

At 4.30pm the patients were sent away for the hospital to be cleaned, which made them go berserk demanding their refund of Sh50 registration fee.

They said they will not leave without treatment saying there is a conspiracy to fleece patients. “I am not going home without my Sh50 I paid at 8.30 after wasting the whole day,” Nyawira said.

Nancy Muthoni, who had taken his feverish son, to the facility did not receive any help at the hospital.

The Star has established that there is a go slow in the hospital after the county government decided to pay student nurses and left out clinical officers interns.

“I used to get paid as a clinical officer student in my third year; and what is happening now is discriminative. Why is the county government paying nurses and excluding us?” an intern said.

The hospital has 28 doctors, 156 nurses and 14 clinical officers.


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