Kenya’s President William Ruto has announced plans to introduce technology to tackle corruption and procurement irregularities at the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (KEMSA). Speaking at a roundtable interview, Ruto stated that information technology processes must be introduced in order to increase integrity levels at KEMSA. “We are using technology to do away with cartels in KEMSA,” he said. “There are many hospitals that are run with public money and they do not do any work, it’s just monkey business. In the next six months we will have digitized all government services.”
Ruto also addressed the challenges facing the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), outlining the measures the government has taken to streamline the fund. “The health sector is one that needs change. The Universal Health Coverage (UHC) plan cannot wait. I had to delay my health plan so that I can sort out issues at the NHIF first,” he said. “To streamline NHIF we had to make various changes. I have appointed a new board and I have also created two departments in the Ministry of Health. We will also engage counties in the implementation of UHC.”
In addition to improving efficiency and integrity, Ruto also promised to address issues faced by healthcare workers in the country. “I have promised to address issues raised by health workers. We must deal with the challenge of health workers going on strike. I have had a conversation with the CoG health committee so that we iron out all the issues bedeviling the healthcare sector,” he said.
President Ruto hopes to improve the efficiency and integrity of both KEMSA and NHIF. Additionally, by addressing the concerns of healthcare workers and working to prevent strikes in the sector, Ruto aims to improve the overall quality of healthcare in the country.