Kenya's top drug supplier- KEMSA, on Monday declared that the country should brace itself for a fast looming drug shortage owing to outstanding debts.
During a press briefing on Monday, KEMSA chief executive, Dr Jonah Manjari revealed that they were in dialogue with various counties in a bid to ensure the debts were settled.
"We are still in negotiations over the need to clear the debts as soon as possible, it is our hope that the debts will be cleared soon," Dr Manjari revealed to the Daily Nation.
He went on to urge counties to do their utmost to clear their arrears so as to ensure the recently launched Universal Health Coverage programme was a success.
An April 11, 2019 report by the parastatal listed the various counties that were knee-deep in debt owed to the state corporation.
Nairobi county topped the list of shame with an alleged debt of Ksh284 million as reported in the Daily Nation.
Other counties with notable debts were Makueni (Ksh163 million), Homa Bay (Ksh138 million), Narok (Ksh105 million), Kitui (Ksh94 million), Kiambu (Ksh95 million) and Turkana which allegedly owes the state agency Ksh96 million.
On the other hand, Elgeyo Marakwet was listed as having cleared its total debt, with an overpayment of Ksh 400,000.
Deputy Director of Medical Service - Dr Irene Muchoko has since come out and disclosed that Nairobi county residents may soon be forced to seek health services at private hospitals.
"The situation is tricky because so far Nairobi county only received drugs once in this financial year and that was last August," Dr Muchoki divulged
Health CS Sicily Kariuki had granted public hospitals a free pass when she ordered KEMSA to supply them with drugs despite a Ksh235 million debt.