Government Sets New Rules for Admission to Referral Hospitals

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta visits a KDF soldier in hospital. Facebook
  • The Ministry of Health has set a new condition for the admission of patients in referral hospitals. 

    Health Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki on Saturday announced that no patient will be admitted to any referral hospital without a letter from a lower level health facility unless in an emergency situation.

    “Patients will not be at liberty to bypass the lower primary healthcare facilities to get to the larger facilities. It will not be a walk-in," the CS told journalists.

    Health CS Sicily Kariuki in her office.

    The move is aimed at decongesting the referral hospitals and lowering the workload for the health workers attached to the facilities.

    The Universal Healthcare Coverage (UHC) pilot program in Kisumu, Nyeri, Isiolo and Machakos counties led to congestion of the hospital wards by people with minor ailments that would have been treated in other health facilities. 

    The CS wondered why Kenyans were still flocking the referral hospitals despite the government abolishing fees at lower ranking hospitals. 

    “The reason we are making the healthcare centres functional is to help the residents remain at the closest facilities," she noted. 

    She also announced that all public health facilities had received medical supplies worth Ksh931 million to last six months. 

    The four counties were chosen to pilot the first phase of the programme that targets 3.2 million Kenyans with a full roll-out in all the 47 counties expected by 2022.

    Citizens with the UHC card in the respective counties are now receiving free health services in Level 2 to Level 5 public health facilities.

    A photo of Kenyatta National Hospital.