Senators want a law enacted to guide the provision of emergency health services and tame rogue, negligent and money-first medics and facilities.
Senate Health committee chair Michael Mbito announced plans to introduce an emergency health services bill to save poor patients in need of treatment.
“We must put the emergency services health bill and other emergency protocols in place,” the Trans Nzoia senator said.
The lawmaker spoke during debate on a report by his committee that recommended sanctions for MP Shah Hospital for negligence that caused the death of a patient.
The panel investigated the death of Virginia Asaph at the facility on May 26.
It recommended that the hospital be fined Sh3 million for negligence that caused Virginia’s death.
Further, the committee, whose report was adopted by the House, wants the Kenya Medical and Dentists Council to separately investigate the conduct of the hospital.
“We recommended that MP Shah Hospital be investigated by KMPDC on this issue of failing to give the emergency treatment to this patient,” he said.
The hospital was accused of allegedly refusing to attend to Virginia from 2am when she was taken there to around 4.27am when treatment started and when cash was deposited.
Mbito said the hospital failed to conduct a life-saving percutaneous coronary intervention and CPI angiogram per the recommended clinical practice.
Senators censured the hospital, saying the incident was a wakeup call to government and legislators to put in place a law to help poor Kenyans in need of emergency services.
“Death due to negligence is more hurting than death by an accident. We say a big no to death due to negligence in any hospital in the country,” nominated Senator Naomi Shiyonga said.
However, this was not the first time a patient died for medics’ negligence. In 2015, a patient, Alex Madaga, died at KNH after waiting at for ICU services for 18 hours.
Senator Farhiya Ali said that whether in a private or public facility, a doctor has an obligation to attend to emergency cases because they swore to protect lives.
“When the doctors in the same spirit see a person die because they were not able to pay or they delayed, it is sad,” the Senate Deputy Majority Chief Whip said.
Homa Bay Senator Moses Kajwang said the rundown state of public health facilities has forced poor patients to seek services in expensive private facilities.
“This person could have gone to a public health facility if our priorities were right as a country,” he reckoned.
“The secret to making sure that we do not end up with these cases is to improve public health. The private sector in health is doing business; they do not care about people,” Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo Jr said.
“We must find somewhere in the Health Act to have emergency care for accident victims, persons found on the roadside or shot accidentally, so that they do not have to recognise your face or the face of a Kenyan they know so that they treat them,” he added.
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