Economy

MPs want Uhuru order on KU hospital revoked

kenyatta-hosi

Kenyatta University Teaching, Research and Referral Hospital (KUTRRH). FILE PHOTO | NMG

john-mutua-img

Summary

  • The National Assembly Select Committee on Implementation directed President Uhuru Kenyatta to revoke the legal notice that placed KUTRRH under the Ministry of Health.
  • The Ministry of Health in a petition to Parliament protested a complete takeover of the referral hospital by KU.

A parliamentary committee has recommended ownership of the Sh8.7 billion Kenyatta University Teaching, Research and Referral Hospital (KUTRRH) be reverted to the institution, a move likely to face opposition from the State.

The National Assembly Select Committee on Implementation directed President Uhuru Kenyatta to revoke the legal notice that placed KUTRRH under the Ministry of Health before March next year.

The Ministry of Health in a petition to Parliament protested a complete takeover of the referral hospital by KU, instead pushing for a public-private partnership (PPP) model that will be led by the varsity.

President Kenyatta gazetted the hospital as a parastatal under the Ministry of Health (MoH) two years ago through the legal notice 4 of 2019, effectively severing the relationship between it and the university.

“H.E the President should revoke the legal notice number 4 of 2019 and revert the Kenyatta University Teaching, Research and Referral Hospital (KUTRRH) to a university hospital within six months of adoption of this report,” the committee says in the report tabled before the House for debate.

KU previously protested the decision to turn KUTRRH into a State parastatal, saying the move locked the university’s teaching staff and students from accessing the health facility.

Initial plans for establishment of the hospital was for its facilities to be used for teaching, training and research exclusively.

Since the hospital became a parastatal, Kenyatta University has been relying on other health institutions to train its medical students for their practical lessons, a venture that the university insists is unsustainable and expensive.

The parliamentary committee directed the ministries of Health and Education to open up the institution to students and lecturers from KU’s Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing and Public Health and Dentistry schools.

The Universities Academic Staff Union KU Chapter says the transfer of KUTRRH from to MoH was flawed and went against the University’s Strategic Plan 2016-2026.