HEALTH HOLDS 3RD JOINT QUARTERLY PERFORMANCE REVIEW MEETING IN LOKICHAR

Health services and sanitation is currently holding a joint three days performance review meeting with health program partners at Black Gold hotel in Lokichar, Turkana South. This is a routine appraisal meeting held once every four months to evaluate progress made and share challenges experienced by all stakeholders of health services in the county during the financial year 2018/2019 third quarter period covering January to April 2019.

The joint meeting which brings together department of health services and partners such as CMLAP, Afya timiza, save the children, world vision Kenya, Afya nyota ya bonde, IRC and EGPAF will track effectiveness of existing service delivery standards and quality of care offered to the population through review of supportive evidences to be presented by the participants supporting provision of health services.

The meeting which will run from 8th to 10th of May 2019 brings together all stakeholders in the provision of health services in the county and the entire senior management of the ministry accompanied by directors and heads of various units and sub/units.

This quarters’ performance review meeting will provide a framework for; information sharing among health sector stakeholders, comparing achievements against target, evaluating existing data processes and systems, discussing best practices and recommended standards as well as develop quality improvement plans for future implementations.

Proceedings will be conducted through presentations, verification of evidence submitted and positive critique from participating county, sub county and stakeholder teams.Other government officials present are Turkana south sub administrator Mr. Alexander Losikiria,and area ward administrator.Opening and Closing remarks will be given by Health CECM and CCO hon. Jane Ajele and Dr. Roberts Abok respectively.

LCRH TO PIONEER FIXED ORTHODONTIC SERVICES IN KENYA

Dental clinic at the LCRH will be the first to roll out fixed orthodontic services in a county referral hospital in Kenya. The service is expected to start in the next three months. The clinic has facilitated specialized training of its staff and acquisition of two complete sets of dental units fully fitted with dental compressor, inter-oral cameras, monitor, suction tubes, head lamb, (cuspido) spitting area and movable treatment table as one stop shop for all forms of oral health services.

The clinic has also been staffed with four (04) dentists, three (03) oral health officers and three (03) dental technologists under the leadership of the chief dentist Dr. Rotich to support the provision of other dental services like; root canal treatment, tooth cleaning, inter-maxillary fixation, minor surgery, stitching, dentures and identification of tumors in the mouth on a round the clock basis.
Other than the dental clinic at the LCRH which serves more than 300 clients every month, the county has also established dental sub-units in Katilu and Lopiding sub county hospitals in Turkana south and Turkana west respectively as outreach centers for basic tooth extraction services, patient education on oral health and dental hygiene as well as referral of complicated cases to the Lodwar for specialized intervention.

According to several residents and clients of the clinic, a remarkable improvement has been witnessed in the area since 2015. Initially, all dental cases had to be referred to Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital in Eldoret. The establishment of the clinic has made it possible to offer routine and emergency dental services within the hospital as soon as they are required.

USHANGA INITIATIVE SENSITIZATION EXERCISE CARRIED OUT IN KERIO & NAKADUKUI – TURKANA CENTRAL

Helena Asinyen, a resident of Nakadukui – Turkana Central Sub-county, listened keenly to the presenter even when her hands were busy beading the wide yellow plastic that when finished would be an Aruba (a woman’s beaded belt).

The mother of five had joined the rest of the Kicheda Group of 35 beaders in a baraza for Ushanga Initiative, a program under the Department of Culture in the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources. The initiative, done in collaboration with the National Government, seeks to empower women to take up beadwork as a business venture in order to enrich their lives.

“In the village, I am best known for my Aruba and Ng’ikingeta [beaded headband] so I get orders. I can make three in a month,” says Helena, who took up beadwork in four years ago.

Ushanga Initiative is looking to support women like Helena, a pastoral woman, to earn a living from their beadwork and not to wear them as just an adornment.  The other counties targeted are West Pokot, Baringo, Marsabit, Samburu, Narok and Kajiado as they too traditionally deal with beads.

During this sensitization exercise in Turkana Central Sub-county, the Department of Culture was able to reach over 100 women in both Kerio and Nakadukui; in the last centre there were some men beaders too. At the baraza, they too were busy beading bracelets and ornaments to decorate the Ng’ateloi (men’s headgear), and carving Aburo (walking stick that would later be beaded).

“Awareness and skills acquired in Ushanga Initiative makes one to become a small scale entrepreneur thus able to earn a living,” said Titus Lokorikeje, Deputy Director Policy, Quality and Research in the Culture Department, at Kerio, “However the willingness of the community and participants to embrace the initiative is more paramount.”

Citing one of their own in Kerio – Joyce Apus who had traveled around Kenya and East Africa showcasing and selling her beaded products and with the support of the county government has been continuously been trained has improved her skills, innovation and value addition. However, Lemmy Ejorewoia – Chief Administrator in the Culture Department – told the women that beadwork called for commitment and patience.

“You [the Nakadukui community] are already doing well, all you need is to advance skills and knowledge,” he said. “The best products will be taken to Biashara Centre where the market is ready.”

He assured them that the county government would soon be training them to use machines; that will enhance their designs, produce better finished products and work faster and efficiently.

He urged them to have their final products to be neat, have reasonable selling points and use local natural materials like leather instead of plastic.

In March 2019, the department trained 20 women for 10 days as trainers of trainers (ToTs) who they will rely on to pass on their learnt beading skills to the rest of the women in county. Then in April 2019, over 100 women were sensitized in Loaren’gak and Kaikor, Turkana North Sub-county.

Upon delivery of her latest belt, Helena will be paid Sh2,000 for the order.

MINISTER JANE AJELE LEADS TURKANA IN COMMEMORATING WORLD MALARIA DAY

The Turkana County Minister for health and sanitation Hon. Jane Ajele joined residents of Nakwamekwi community unit to commemorate world malaria day which is an annual global event observed every 25th April to share efforts of the county government in the fight against malaria. The theme for this year was ‘zero malaria begins with me’ and a national rallying call ‘Natumia mbinu zote kumaliza malaria.’

She said that the ministry has increased the number and distribution of malaria sentinel sites from 22 to 35 to ensure malaria upsurge is detected early enough and responded to in good time in the entire county. The sentinel sites also monitor and reports on a weekly basis as part of malaria epidemic preparedness hence a significant reduction of malaria specific illness and deaths.

The Minister also said that the cases of malaria had reduced from 240,000 to 170,000 over the last two year. She attributed the reduction to; good stewardship of Governor Nanok towards strengthening health financing and supporting policy and technical leadership in Malaria control, enhanced availability of malaria commodities in all health facilities in the county, training of more than 1000 CHVs to detect and treat uncomplicated malaria and the continuous updating of health care workers on emerging approaches of malaria case management.

She noted that though the impact of malaria is hugely manifested through eroded household income and loss of opportunities arising from absenteeism due to the disease, the county will achieve malaria free status in the near future since all the necessary tools, manpower, resources, political goodwill and global support exists.

The event was attended by a host of staff of the national and county government including deputy director for public health Mr sifuna, sub county MoH for central Mr. Lochor, county coordinator for Malaria Mr. Lokemer, sub chief of Nakwamekwi sub location, ward administrator for township ward, principal and staff of the Kenya Medical Training College Lodwar campus and representatives of health program partners among others.

Lodwar County Referral Hospital laboratory recommended for ISO certification

Lodwar County Referral Hospital laboratory is at an advanced stage of receiving ISO 15189:2012 accreditation. It will be the first and only facility in the Northern Arid Lands (NALs) region to acquired the standard. The accreditation recommendation was issued yesterday by Kenya Acreditation Service(KENAS ) after several assessments that touched on the tests carried out, quality and procedures in place to ensure reliable quality laboratory results are available in the premier County health facility.

The accreditation recommendation is a confirmation that the laboratory can effectively support enhanced service delivery of medical interventions by giving accurate, reliable, and timely laboratory results for correct diagnosis and better patient outcomes.

Mr. Maragia James Marcomics-the officer in charge of laboratory services, said that the preparation for accreditation started last year with the installation of computer assisted systems that could track delivery of services in real times and enhance timely response to the clients.

The laboratory is well equipped with gene expert machines, biosafety cabinets, microscopes fridges and incubators centrifuge, autoclave for sterilization of culture plates, chemistry machine, blood transfusion machines and coagulation machine for offering the widest range of laboratory services available.
The laboratory e-system is supported by a server to allow for paperless interaction between the service providers and the clients. The facility serves more than 300 people on a daily basis. started last year with the installation of computer assisted systems that could track delivery of services in real times and enhance timely response to the clients.

The laboratory is well equipped with gene expert machines, biosafety cabinets, microscopes fridges and incubators centrifuge, autoclave for sterilization of culture plates, chemistry machine, blood transfusion machines and coagulation machine for offering the widest range of laboratory services available.
The laboratory e-system is supported by a server to allow for paperless interaction between the service providers and the clients. The capacity of the facility has increased considerably since it can now serves more than 300 people on a daily basis as compared to only 150 cases before the recommended accreditation.

CECM Aletia flags off last mile of anti-locusts spray in Lokichar; terms exercise successful

County executive for Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries ,Chris Aletia  today flagged off the last mile of Locusts spraying in Lokichar ,Turkana south sub county and termed the long month exercise as an achievement by the County government towards pest control.

Speaking in Lokichar Airstrip during the flagging off event, CECM Aletia said that the county had taken the initiative to save vegetation from being damaged by Locust as part of Drought mitigation Additionally, CEC Aletia said that the tree locusts had   depleted animal feed and pasture with treetop grazers being the most affected.

The countywide pest control exercise started last month and targets to cover a total of 837.35Km square. The exercise is jointly being done by the National and county government. The county government bought the chemical and Aircraft fuel while the National government provided the Aircraft.

CEC Aletia noted that a research by ministry officials identified the Locust Species, “Anarcridium melanorhodon” as the major one attacking vegetative part of acacia and shrubs. The pest is also reported to have attacked prosopis juliflora along the Laggas and Streams affecting both rangeland and farm sites.

The insecticide purchased by the County government for Locust control is Utra Low Volume (ULV) sumithion Insecticide, which has undergone checks and registration by Pest Control Products Board (PCPB). It is certified by the World health Organization and classified as yellow (safe Human and Environmental friendly). The Total ULV purchased is 3,000 litres and were proportionately allocated per Sub-County based on the amount of vegetation (target areas) cover infestation.

CEC Aletia also inspected the ongoing construction of Veterinary Lab and cold chain store in Lokichar. If completed, the facility will help in storage of vaccines, that will shorten and Ease response to diseases and service delivery not only to Turkana south but also to Turkana East sub county.

Spraying of Locusts for the remaining   Turkana East sub county will start on Wednesday.

Also accompanying the County executive were Turkana South Deputy county commissioner Philip Sigei, Agriculture Deputy Director Paul Lokone, several county officers and a host of professionals from Turkana South.

USHANGA INITIATIVE SENSITISATION EXERCISE CARRIED OUT IN TURKANA NORTH SUB-COUNTY

As a resident of Kaikor in Turkana North Sub-County, Rebecca Erupe options for formal employment or engaging in viable economic activities are limited. Therefore, in a recent sensitisation meeting about Ushanga Initiative, she appreciated the county’s drive to encourage women to take up beadwork as an economic activity.

The Ushanga Initiative, a program under the Department of Culture in the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources, is targeting such women like Rebecca to improve their lives through beadwork. Under the initiative, the department will offer training and assistance in accessing local and international markets.

The department having already trained over 20 trainer of trainers (ToTs) from Turkana South, East and Central Sub-Counties, the next was the vast Turkana North/ Kibish Sub-County and on a later date – Loima Sub-County. This recent exercise sensitised over 100 women in Loareng’ak and Kaikor centres with plans to reach out to more centres.

“We [the county] would like to encourage you to make different types of beaded products to sell as it will improve your standard of living and promote the Turkana culture,” said Lemmy Ejorewoia – the Chief Administrator in the Department of Culture, during the meeting with the Kaikor women.

He also assured the women that the department would be training them soon with machines such as looms and bead spinners that he showed the women during the two meetings.

By learning how to use the machines and business skills, the women would be able to make different beaded items, create new designs, work easier and faster, and advance the finishing of the products in order to be competitive in the market.

On his part the Turkana North Sub-County Administrator James Ekwakai encouraged the women to continue making bead product because it is a source of income.

The Ushanga Initiative, done in collaboration with the National Government, is meant to empower the pastoral women by changing the perception or understanding on the use of beads as not just an adornment but an economic asset to improve their lives. Turkana is one of the seven counties targeted traditionally dealing in beads; others being West Pokot, Baringo, Marsabit, Samburu, Narok and Kajiado.

 

TURKANA COUNTY GOVERNMENT ROLLS OUT CAMEL VACCINATION EXERCISE

Countywide vaccination exercise for camels by the County Department of Veterinary Services was officially launched today by Deputy Governor Peter Lotethiro.

The vaccination against Haemorrhaagic septicaemia known in Ng’aturkana as “Lookot” has affected camels and it is associated with stress caused by long search of water and pasture.

Its characterized by pneumonia, internal bleeding (Haemorrhagic enteririts) and sudden death.

Speaking during the launch in Kerio Delta Ward, Turkana Central DG Lotethiro said that the County Government has taken the initiative of vaccinating camels to cushion herders against losses during this drought season. He said livestock rearing was the main source of livelihood in Kerio and other parts of the county and so their is need for quick response to mitigate the situation.

County Executive for Agriculture,Pastoral Economy and Fisheries Executive Chris Aletia said that the Ministry with support from the National Government and Food Agriculture Organizations(FAO) will soon distribute 350 Metric Tonnes of Range Cubes as a supplement feed for livestock during this dry season across the county.

Chief Officer for Fisheries,Livestock and Veterinary Services, Dr Michael Eregae said that the disease was first reported in January but was later brought under control.
After reported cases of camels deaths, Dr Eregae says that the ministry procured 2,000 vials of antibiotic( Penstrep)for treatment of early cases starting from Turkana Central, Turkana South and Loima sub-counties.

So far 675 Cases of camels who have died from the disease have been reported, 6191 treated while another 130,615 Camels risk starvation due to the ongoing drought. Haemorrhagic Septicaemia is commonly transmitted through contact with infected body fluids and excretion.

The County government has spent Sh2million for the vaccination and procurement of another 15 million drugs consignment to facilitate county wide exercise is on process that aims to cover 750,000 Camels in the whole county.

Also present during the event were Director of Veterinary Services Dr. Benson Longor,Kerio Delta MCA Peter Eregae and county government officers.

FRUIT AND ORNAMENTAL TREE SEEDLINGS DISTRIBUTION

The Department of Natural Resources, under the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources, will soon be distributing 3,000 fruit and ornamental tree seedlings to organisations and sold to interested individuals.

Chief Officer of Tourism, Culture and Natural Resources, Pauline Lokuruka has said the seedlings represent a new approach to ensuring the ministry distributed high value tress which in future would enhance food security and nutrition.

“The reason why the ministry is selling to individuals is to encourage the feel of ownership which in this case the survival rate tree seedlings and raise revenue for the county,” she said.

The Deputy Director Pauline Ngoli Pusiye, Natural Resources, said the guava, orange and mango fruits trees are grafted and ready for planting. The ornamental tree, the umbrella, is a step away from the favoured neem, however the deputy director is confident the tree will grow in this kind of environment.

The distribution strategy, which ensures that there is equitable sharing throughout the county, will be 60% to institutions and 40% to individuals. It was agreed that following high demand of seedlings by the public, each person would be allowed to get at least 5 seedlings per species.

In this regard, individuals interested would be expected to pay Sh300 per fruit seedling and Sh100 for the ornamental. This, says Deputy Director of Natural Resources, will be a sign of commitment and ownership while organized groups/institutions who will receive in form of donation.

For an institution to qualify, it has to meet the following criteria; copy of certificate of registration; provide seedling protection; water and labour

COUNTY GOVERNMENT ROLLS OUT RELIEF FOOD DISTRIBUTION TO REGIONS HARD-HIT BY DROUGHT

Deputy governor Peter Lotethiro has today launched the first phase of relief food distribution that will benefit residents in regions severely affected by drought.

Speaking when he flagged off trucks ferrying relief food at the at the National Cereals and Produce Board(NCPB) silos in Lodwar, DG Lotethiro said that the distribution has been necessitated by the negative impact that has been caused by the ongoing drought. He warned that the situation was alarming such and required quick intervention.

He called for support from the national government to reach more residents regions affected, saying the distribution from the county government was not enough for all the affected residents of the county.

“We appeal to the national government through the concerned ministry to provide relief food so as to boost the current supply of cereals and cooking oil that the county is distributing. I urge them to to act first and contain the situation before it gets out of hand,” he said.

The Deputy Governor said 12 wards most affected that its food will benefit from the batch of food released today. The wards are Kibish, Lapur, Nanam, Lobokat, Letea, Lobei-Kotaruk, Kerio Delta, Songot, Kaaleng-Kaikor, Kaikor and Lokori-Kochodin which will recieve 36,000 of 50Kgs bags, 10,000 of 50kg bags of beans and 10,000 of 20 litres cooking oil.

County Executive Public Service and Disaster Management Charles Lokiyoto said that the sub-county and ward administrators had been mobilized to distribute the relief food with help from the distribution committees; and assured that the County will coordinate with the ward distribution committees ensure residents targeted received the rightful share of the food.

The food distribution committee he says would weigh the amount of relief food delivered and crosscheck with the planned amount to be received at the ward level.

Also present to witness the flagging was the County Secretary Peter Eripete, County Attorney Erastus Ethekon, Chief Officer for Decentralized Administration and Disaster Management Abraham Losinyen and a host of county government officials.