Elgeyo Marakwet County has acquired a Bipolar Cautery Machine for ophthalmology to be based at Chebiemit Hospital.
The machine was launched on Wednesday by Governor Alex Tolgos.
Previously, eye patients from Marakwet had to travel all the way to Iten to access these services at the Iten County Referral Hospital.
With the machine, the hospital will be able to perform both minor and major eye surgeries.
Chebiemit hospital has for many years served as a referral facility for whole of Marakwet region.
Governor Tolgos said the increasing cases of eye complications across the County prompted his administration to improve and expand eye care services to the sub counties.
He added that the eye services offered in the County facilities will be affordable noting that an eye surgery at private hospitals and even MTRH cost over Sh90,000 while the County hospitals only charge between Sh5,000 to Sh10,000.
Governor Tolgos disclosed that the county has also hired it’s first Doctor Ophthalmologist, the first for Elgeyo Marakwet County since Kenya’s independence.
The Governor asked residents to take advantage of the new eye services at Chebiemit and even go for check ups, especially for elderly citizens.
He said the County would continue with the plan to devolve the eye care services to all Sub County hospitals.
Deputy Governor Wisley Rotich who was present called on residents to enroll to the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF)to benefit from the roll out of specialised treatment in the grassroots.
“As we speak, our County together with the national government will offer free NHIF to needy residents in 63,000 households in the County and this is a big boost in health care provision,” he said.
The Governor further hailed staff at the Chebiemit hospital for their professionalism and commitment citing their rapid response when Covid cases were reported at Chebiemit Boys High School.
He warned health staff, especially nurses, in other facilities who have gone on strike that they will not receive their January salaries if they dont report back to work.
“As Elgeyo Marakwet, we have tried to address the welfare of our health staff including the recent promotion of over 400 health staff despite our limited resources. So it is unfair for them to down their tools when we have done our best,” he added.
Present during the function were Deputy Governor Wisley Rotich, Moiben Kuserwo MCA Thomas Kimunei, Health CEC Isaac Kamar, Chief Officer Mary Kipchumba, Marakwet West MOH Dr Brian Keter and staff at the facility led by the Chebiemit Medical Superintendent Mr Lawrence Kogos, the hospital board chairman Jennifer Kimutai among other officials and members of the public.