A report on a medical camp organised by Pastor Dorcas Rigathi for the drivers and touts within Nairobi County has exposed alarming health concerns.
In a report sent to Kenyans.co.ke by the Office of the Second Lady, doctors undertaking the exercise noted that most of the drivers were suffering from severe health complications, posing a threat to the safety of the passengers.
40 per cent of the drivers had eye problems and needed urgent medical interventions.
Doctors reported that some of the drivers were even short-sighted, yet they had no idea about their conditions.
"In addition to treatment, about 10-15 per cent require different referrals to see specialists for various reasons, such as surgeons and specialists. Approximately 20 per cent need to enhance their commitment to clinics because many were diagnosed with diabetes or hypertension but have not been consistent with medication.
"We emphasised the importance of adhering to treatment for chronic diseases to avoid fatalities like kidney failure. Less than 1 per cent will need further intervention, such as surgery. Specifically, one individual will need to undergo cataract surgery," Dr Elizabeth Wamwea, who led the exercise, noted.
On the other hand, Geoffrey Tumaini, the Clinical Officer In charge of Medical Camps in Nairobi County, highlighted that some of these health challenges were a result of the working conditions.
Occasionally, Tumaini indicated that the drivers have to start their work very early in the morning and that exposes them to respiratory illnesses.
"Many people with diabetes have never had their eyes checked, and this was an opportunity for them to undergo examinations to check if the nervous system was affected by diabetes. This camp was a great cause.
"We had one case where a driver was unaware that his right eye had vision issues, and he testified that he had been involved in accidents involving his right side. We identified this during the camp, and he is scheduled for corrective surgery," he stated.
The report from the medical exercise highlights some of the factors that have contributed to accidents on the roads.
Some of the concerns led to the launch of the mandatory retesting for Public Service Vehicles (PSVs) drivers by Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen.
In the exercise, which was suspended in July, drivers were to undergo physical examination too. However, it was suspended to allow for more consultation between stakeholders.
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