The Constitution of Kenya recognizes access to medical care as a basic human right for every Kenyan. Unfortunately millions of Kenyans cannot afford to pay for quality health services at public or private clinics. Even with public health insurance available since 1966 coupled with the heightened campaigns for people to be covered by the National Hospital Insurance Fund, only 20 to 30% of Kenyans have access to medical insurance coverage. With the population at over 45 million plus, it means that about 32 million Kenyans are excluded from quality health care coverage. The rural poor make the majority of those not covered by any form of medical insurance meaning that they have to pay out of their pockets for medical expenses. Some end up selling all they own to afford to pay for the sick.
Eye diseases are among the common illnesses that are found in the rural areas and among the poor due to poor hygiene, poor sanitation, and poor feeding habits. The objective of the TVT free medical camp is therefore to bring affordable healthcare and free health information to the community. Identify the common eye and general health problems of the community in order to devise ways of addressing them. Create awareness on how to manage eye and other health conditions that are not completely curable. Provide patients and relatives of patients with terminal illnesses. TVT is therefore partnering with Lion’s Eye Hospital in Loresho to take a free eye clinic to Meru on the 11 August. Based on the previous TVT free medical camps, most of the eye related cases ended up being cataracts requiring operation. Out of over estimated 1000 eye patients about 50 of them will require specialized treatment in Nairobi. Lions Hospital will carry out all the procedures and operations free of charge but TVT will have to pay for travel expenses from Meru to Loresho and back, provide meals and accommodation for 50 patients for at least 5 days to allow proper follow up clinics after the operation. Approximately kshs. 400,000 or US$ 4,000 is required. TVT is therefore appealing to well-wishers to support the camp in order to ensure that those requiring further treatment will be attended to immediately after the medical camp.
The fact that the Government is working to improve the situation does not mean that vulnerable people will immediately have access to affordable medical care. It does not also mean that the vulnerable people will have to wait until the government is able to provide them with health care services. Thus all stakeholders and people of goodwill must strive to make interventions that would ameliorate problems faced by people who cannot afford to pay for medical services. A healthy community is a rich and a happy people. To donate towards the free medical camp use: MPESA PAYBILL NO. 830310 ACCOUNT: 1040294102222 EQUITY