Kenya will send 300 health workers to West Africa to help fight the deadly Ebola virus, which killed thousands in the region, a Kenyan official has said.
"Kenya will soon be sending over 300 health workers to the West African countries affected by the Ebola epidemic," James Macharia, Cabinet Secretary for Health, said during the opening of the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) on Monday.
Macharia said that Ebola has exposed vulnerabilities of the African healthcare systems.
"The scourge has been felt strongly among our West African brothers and sisters, like any other disaster we come together as a continent to support each other," he said.
In recent months, Ebola – a contagious disease for which there is no known treatment or cure – has killed roughly 5,420 people, mostly in West Africa, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Macharia said that Kenya was working hard to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015.
"We have invested in improving all aspects of delivering health to the people of Kenya and have made progress in reducing maternal mortality from 460 deaths in 2010 to 360 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2013," he said.
"We have further improved on child health by reducing child mortality from about 114 under 5 deaths in 2000 to 73 under 5 years deaths per 1000 live births in 2013," he added.
"There has also been a significant reduction in HIV prevalence with a positive shift from 14% in 1990 to 6% in 2014."
For her part, WHO's Country representative in Kenya Custodia Mandlhate said that governments in the WHO's African region have made efforts to increase investments in the health sector towards achieving health-related MDGs.
"However, the modest investments made are yet to translate into health outcomes to enable attainment of the MDGs by 2015," Mandlhate said.
"I therefore implore countries of the African region to implement their commitments made in the Algiers and Abuja Declarations and develop sustainable and innovative research funding mechanisms," she added.
Mandlhate concluded by reiterating that the WHO will promote platform that facilitate research to meet the health needs of people in Africa.
Last Mod: 24 Kasım 2014, 23:25