Health crisis Patients locked up in hospital over unpaid bills

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The patients have not received medical attention ever since the nationwide strike by health workers started on Monday.

Kabarnet County Referral Hospital in Baringo County. Fourteen patients have been locked up inside the hospital wards for failure to clear their bills. play Kabarnet County Referral Hospital in Baringo County. Fourteen patients have been locked up inside the hospital wards for failure to clear their bills. (Standard Digital)

Fourteen patients have been locked up inside hospital wards at the Kabarnet County Hospital, Baringo County.

The patients have not received medical attention ever since the nationwide strike by health workers started on Monday.

However, they have not been allowed to leave the hospital over unpaid bills.

Some of them have been at the hospital for two months.

"Security officers are under strict instructions not to allow us to leave the wards until hospital bills are cleared. It is painful that they have decided to lock us in without drugs for two days," one of the patients said.

Chepurai Lomotepa, a Koloa resident whose legs are heavily bandaged following an infection, has been in the hospital for two months and her left knee has been operated on four times.

play Doctors protest at Afya House, Nairobi, on December 5, 2016. (Nation Media Group)

 

Unlike other patients, she has not been visited by any relatives and was brought in by a good Samaritan.

Orders from hospital management

She however cannot leave the hospital until she has cleared her bill after the order from the hospital management.

Their relatives have been forced to buy them painkillers from nearby clinics.

Another patient, has been surviving on painkillers as she nurses a wound that is undressed after failing to clear her bill of Sh40, 000.

At least 14 patients have died across the country as the strike by Kenya’s health workers began on Monday.

Health services were paralysed in most public hospitals as doctors and nurses made good their threat to go on strike.

In Western and Nyanza regions, relatives of patients had to dress their patients’ wounds or pay some nurses between Sh300-Sh400 to have them clean the wounds.

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