Kenya extends Cuban doctors deal by two more years

Family physician Dr Mayroliz Rodriguez and cardiologist Dr Yanelys  Soto meet Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui in July 2018/ COURTESY

The government of Kenya has extended the stay of Cuban doctors in the country after the expiry of eh two-year deal..

In a letter by Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe to Council of Governors Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya, counties will continue to meet their obligations as per the May 2018 Memorandum of Understanding.

Furnished apartments, security, transport and a monthly salary are some of the privileges the initial 100 Cuban doctors enjoy, according to the MoU. The national government would cater for the pay, while the county would cater for the rest.

The specialists were to serve for two years, with an extension signed by the CoG.

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“This is to inform you that the Ministry has renewed the bilateral agreement between Kenya and the Republic of Cuba on provision of specialized healthcare services, through the deployment of Cuban doctors,” Kagwe said in the letter dated June 12.

He added that the continued services of the doctors in the counties s therefore assured. The counties will continue to meet the obligations as the Memorandum of Understanding.

“During this renewed period, the Ministry will be reviewing the specialization mix to respond to the needs within the counties,” Kagwe said.

Kenya imported the 100 medical specialists in May 2018, with each county getting at least two.

The move to bring the experts was agreed on in March that year by President Uhuru Kenyatta in a bilateral agreement with the Cuba government, which allowed specialist doctors to work in Kenya.

However, the doctors’ union had opposed the hiring of foreign doctors, insisting there were 171 local specialists without jobs.

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