KMET partners with varsity to reach the youth with SRH info and services

KMET and the Maseno University Aids Control Unit (ACU) are currently holding a three-day health drive where hundreds of students from the university’s main campus are benefiting from sexual reproductive health education, cervical cancer screening services, HIV testing and counseling and a basket of contraceptive choices.

According to a 2014 study by the African Population and Health Research Center, young people face numerous health challenges during their transition to adulthood. These challenges include, among others, limited access to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) information and services.

Unmet SRH needs among adolescents may contribute to sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV, and unintended pregnancies. Adolescent pregnancies are associated with several adverse outcomes, such as miscarriage, unsafe abortion, obstructed labor, and other complications, which can result in long-term morbidity and even death.

Additionally, poor sexual and reproductive health outcomes can especially impact the status of young women, as they may face stigma from the community as well as diminished educational and employment opportunities.

Kisumu County health officials to step up use of UBT Kit

Kisumu county health officials have made a resolution to escalate use of the uterine balloon tamponed innovation in managing cases of uncontrolled postpartum hemorrhage in the county maternity hospitals meaning more lives will be saved during the delivery related complication.

The County Director of Health, Dr. Dickens Onyango endorsed the plan to kick off UBT trainings in the biggest referral hospital in the county- Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Referral and Teaching Hospital and to train government essential medical obstetric care (EMOC ) trainers who will in turn pass the knowledge to other health facilities that offer maternity services.

The commitments, which were made during a breakfast meeting between KMET and the health officials is a significant move to redeeming the maternal health situation of Kisumu County which has been ranked among the 15 worst counties that contribute to maternal deaths in the country by a recent study. KMET will offer the training services as well as supply the UBT kits

Gynocare Fistula Centre scaling the heights through healthcare financing

Gynocare Fistula Centre and Maternity Home in Eldoret town is soon moving out of a high-cost rental building to their own health complex with expanded services, thanks to the Medical Credit Fund.
Before the good news, the hospital management was paying rent of KES 68,000 per month in a lease agreement of 5 years that expired in the year 2014. Afterwards, the rent tripled and they had to part with KES 255,000 per month, which was subjected to an annual increment of ten percent.

Victor Nyakundi the hospital administrator explains that the increased rent pushed up the cost of business drastically hence the board of management quickly decided to shop for a parcel of land to establish a premise of their own.  They, however, lacked a reliable financial partner on whom they could rely to achieve their dream.
“Luckily in 2014 we met KMET who introduced us to the Medical Credit Fund program which has since given us a lot of technical assistance in quality improvement ,business improvement and further financial support,” recounts Mr. Nyakundi who is one of the first few employees who started the facility in 2010.

NEW BUILDING FOR GYNOCAREThe hospital staff has benefited from a series of quality technical support on patient care and safety; human resource management; supply chain management and on other related areas so as to meet SafeCare standards. The administrator describes implementation of SafeCare in the health facility as having been timely.
“We have experienced incredible growth in the past five years expanding from an outpatient clinic with two (2) employees to a fully functioning inpatient hospital with over forty (40) staff.  The SafeCare quality standards have increased the public trust in us and made us accountable to our customers and we believe we will be able to sustain the momentum we have gathered,” explains Nyakundi.

The administrator affirms that the hospital has been able to collect more revenue by simply organizing their affairs, for instance, financial and procurement policies that were non-existent before have been put in place resulting into accountability and better planning for hospital funds.
Further giving patients full information about their diagnosis, proposed treatment and the cost implications has helped to minimize losses that would otherwise occur due to non-payment especially after surgical procedures.

With a steadily growing clientele, need for more and better infrastructure has become certain.
The hospital’s current three private admission rooms are insufficient to meet client demand and the operation theatre room is regularly overstretched forcing the hospital to refer emergencies to other health facilities.

“We have patients that need services like ICU which we have to outsource and really eat into our revenue since most of them pay out-of-pocket and sometimes cannot settle their bills in time.” Laments Nyakundi.

With the commitment to improve quality of care, Gynocare applied for a loan of KES 25 million through MCF. This amount has enabled the facility management to kick off the building of a mega health complex that is set to be the biggest private health amenity in the county.The building will not only free Gynocare from the exorbitant monthly rent but also promises expanded services. Daniel Kosgey, the laboratory technician expressed his excitement about the new health complex because of the assurance of sufficient space and increased scope of services.

He stated: “I have desired to have a waiting bay, a bleeding room and an analysis room separated as a best practice in laboratory services but the space we have here can hardly accommodate the equipment”.

The new building provides more space for the introduction of  more services such as X-ray diagnosis, an emergency and trauma management center, two operating theaters, an ICU unit and twenty-six private rooms to accommodate the growing demand for services.  Gynocare Fistula Centre and Maternity Home are gearing to move into the new health complex in 2017 thanks to SafeCare and Medical Credit Fund initiatives.

KMET CEO Celebrated during the 2016 International Women’s Day

KMET CEO Monica Oguttu was widely celebrated during the March 8, International Women’s Day- a date in the global calendar when the world recognizes the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women.

The social site-twitter was abuzz with goodwill and congratulatory messages from local and international partner organizations lauding Monica’s role in championing girls’ empowerment and passion in advocating for sexual reproductive health rights in Africa.

Friends of KMET and KMET staff also took the opportunity to celebrate Ms. Oguttu who has been the CEO of the organization for over two (2) decades since its inception in 1996. KMET is an indigenous organization committed to promoting health and education among underserved communities with an aim of changing different practices and policies with regard to quality health care services.

Before joining KMET, Monica, who is a trained Nurse/Midwife, managed a busy Maternity unit at Kenyatta National Teaching and Referral Hospital doubling as an Honorary Lecturer at the department of Nursing – Nairobi University for 15 years before opting out to start KMET health programs together with other professionals from the Western Kenya region.

Her passion to reach out to girls and women was stirred at Kenyatta Hospital where she recounts to have routinely witnessed the agony women, majorly from the rural and slum areas, underwent because of attempted abortion and other maternal health related complications.

"There is no way I would have continued working there as our daughters and women rotted in the wards," she narrated to one local journalist during an interview. “I decided to reach out to the women right where the problem was-and that is in the village.”

Among other maternal, child and reproductive health issues, Monica has been vocal on breaking the silence on one of Kenya’s controversial and stigmatizing subjects —abortion. Unsafe abortion is the third leading killer of girls and women in the country with the number one killer being bleeding during or after birth known as postpartum hemorrhage (PPH).

Under her leadership, KMET implements a reproductive health program to expand access to affordable family planning, Post Abortion Care (PAC) services, and adolescent/youth reproductive health services. KMET also runs a chain of 80 private clinics known as the Huduma Poa social franchise that strengthens their ability to provide affordable and quality maternal and child health services (pneumonia, malaria and diarrheal diseases), family planning, cervical cancer screening and HIV/AIDS.

To ensure that the health sector conforms to international and national quality health standards while remaining economically viable, KMET collaborates with the Medical Credit Fund (MCF) to provide affordable loans to private health facilities in the rural to expand range of services and ensure sustainable quality care.  
The organization also supports hundreds of vulnerable adolescent young girls and women through vocational support programs. Teen mothers acquire skills through vocational training and job linkages while their children attend the KMET Early Childhood Development Education Centre.

These initiatives have earned KMET several accolades such as the Margaret Sanger Award (2004) by Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) for demonstrating leadership and courage in advocating for Reproductive Health Rights, which was also the first time for the award to come to Africa.
In April 2013, Monica was feted by IPAS for outstanding dedication and devotion to women’s health & rights during celebration of IPAS’ 40th anniversary.

Most recently in 2015, the Kenya Obstetrics and Gynaecology Society (KOGS) recognized Monica for being an outstanding champion of Sexual reproductive health rights in the counties.

Our sincere gratitude goes to the partners and friends who recognized the efforts of Ms Monica Oguttu during the International Women’s Day 2016 and we are proud to be associated with you in the work that we do together.
Planned Parenthood Global and the entire Kenya office, Francoise Girard and the entire International women's Health Coalition, Population Action International Maggie Groff of PPF and Sarah Thomsen we remain grateful!

Below are links to some of the messages: