Health Team Conducts TB Screening At NCRH
County TB and Leprosy Co-ordinator Mr. David Muriithi, well knows as
Muriithi wa TB, and Nyahururu County Referral Hospital Lab technologist, Mr. Josphat Lokwanya, among other health workers, set out to screen the entire Nyahururu GK prison community, including wardens, their families, and inmates, for tuberculosis.
The exercise was held on 17th to 20th October 2022, in a collaborative intervention between County Department of Medical Services and Public Health, in conjunction with TB program Radiography team, from Nairobi.
Nyahururu County Referral Hospital took the lead by unleashing its laboratory human resource in the four-day preventive and promotive services whose main focus was on TB screening.
The team was able to screen 701 inmates and prison officers, collected 218 sputum samples for analysis by a gene expert, 210 chest x-rays, and 1 culture.
During the four days exercise, the TB presumed inmated had their samples subjected to Free State of the art molecular/bacteria DNA amplification testing at NCRH, as well as mobile Digital X-ray screening.
Emphasizing the importance of the intervention, TB coordinator Mr. Muriithi said successful TB control at the prison is crucial and of great importance bearing in mind that even the incarcerated deserve same rights to quality health as the free folks.
Prisons experience late TB diagnosis and this endangers the lives of the prisoners and the officers in these institutions. This situation is worsened by inadequate treatment, overcrowding, poor ventilation, and repeated prison transfers that catalyse transmission of TB infection.Muriithi explained.
Such proactive healthcare approach is a strategy County Government's Department of Health is taking, together with partners, in appreciating promotive and preventive medical outreach do not only save lives, but significantly reduce health budgets for patients, if symptoms are detected and arrested, before graduating to curative stage.
The TB team has been working tirelessly to decrease TB trasmission in the community by providing safety measures, education, test, and treatment for tuberculosis. This great effort has made Laikipia be recognized as the best county in Kenya in quality TB care in 2021 by the National Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases Program.
The medical outreach was closed by Governor Joshua Irungu who commended the health workers for the thoughtful, life-saving exercise. He appreciated the Nyahururu GK prison too for partnering with Laikipia in such a noble health exercise for the benefits of inmates, officers, and their loved ones.
Department of Health appreciated that promotive and preventive medical outreaches do not only save lives, but significantly reduced health budgets for patients, if symptoms are detected and arrested, before graduating to full-blown disease.