West Pokot residents decry rising cases of maternal deaths

West Pokot residents have complained about the rising cases of maternal deaths in hospitals in the County
West Pokot residents have complained about the rising cases of maternal deaths in hospitals in the County
 Residents in West Pokot County decried the rising cases of maternal deaths in Kapenguria County referral hospital after three mothers died last week. Eight women have died since the year started in the hospital during delivery. They faulted health workers in the hospital for negligence, poor services and the ailing health sector following the rate of deaths in the County. The residents gave a week ultimatum to the County government to improve the health services and make changes in the management and leadership of the County health department, failure to which they will be forced to stage a major demonstration over the public outcry in the health sector.
They accused health workers of incompetence and cited a lack of health workers, lack of essential facilities, deaths during referrals and shortage of drugs in most health facilities in the County.
Speaking at Puropoi village, Chepareria ward when they went to condole the family of a 35-year-old mother of eight, Leah Lokir, who died on Wednesday last week during delivery, the residents expressed their dissatisfaction over health services in most health centers in the County.
The deceased mother was taken to Chepareria health center, referred to Kapenguria County referral hospital and taken to Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital in Eldoret where she missed admission and died at the reception at Mediheal hospital on arrival leaving
the newborn baby alive.
They called on the government to intervene and save lives at the health facility. “We are saddened with the death because of poor services because doctors have been transferred to other hospitals in remote areas. We need the national government to intervene. Our County is in a bad situation because they sacked some medical practitioners and employed
unqualified and inexperienced health workers. It takes longer for one to get treatment at the hospital,” said Kurion.
Former MCA Teresa Lokichu pleaded with the government to establish the
root cause of the deaths in the hospital. Former Chepareria MCA Jon stone Losilian faulted the County leadership for poor administration, sabotage and laxity in the hospital. “It is wrong for the Deputy Governor to work from abroad and come around for only a few days,” added Losilian.
He said health sector should be reclaimed and repositioned under the management of the national government. However, the Chief Officer in charge of health in West Pokot County Ibrahim Longolomoi dismissed the allegations terming it an isolated case. He said 17 Cesarean surgery operations have been successfully conducted in the hospital and health services improved in West Pokot County. “The death of one mother was an unfortunate incidence and we tried to refer her because we don’t have an ICU and high independency unit. The negligence people are talking about should not happen. Deaths happen everywhere and it shouldn’t be a reason to cite negligence,” he said, “We have done further scrutiny of the cases where three mothers lost their lives.”
Longolomoi asked area politicians to stop politicizing the health issue and instead visit the hospital to solve the issues.