Update on Primary Health Care in Turkana

Update on Primary Health Care in Turkana

Turkana update

Featured on the ICN website

We are pleased to share with you the current situation in Turkana after many weeks of rain and its impact on the local people. New Ways partner organization, MCSPA, is based in Turkana, the Northern part of Kenya and close to the border with Ethiopia.

Turkana is a very arid area, and in March temperatures had reached 40 C, so very uncomfortable for all. It is an area where it is expected that there will be heavy rainfall in April and October. There are many years where they receive no rain at all which makes life extremely difficult. After more than a year without any rain showers, they now have experienced more than three weeks of heavy rains in April. As will all good things there are some negative impacts of the heavy rains, such as moving about between the development centers and the projects that they are supporting.

However, as a result of these heavy rains there is enough water collection in the earth pans and rock dams, which will sustain the population during prolonged drought. These also help refresh the water table, so the rain doesn’t all flow into Lake Turkana which is alkaline and therefore not suitable for drinking. Also, people now are able to feed on enough milk and blood since the animals have enough grass, and the traditional Turkana rely on their animals for nourishment.

Despite enjoying the cool breeze and listening to the melodious songs from the birds, we are concerned about the negative impact that so much water brings especially on the most vulnerable people: children under five years, pregnant woman, the elderly and people with physical disabilities. There is fear of high rates of diseases like malaria since the mosquito breeding levels are high, respiratory diseases like cold cough, pneumonia, asthma, bronchitis etc. and waterborne diseases due to contaminated and stagnant water causing cholera and bilharzia.

These illnesses put a major strain on the Primary Healthcare program that is run by MCSPA – with dispensaries and mobile clinics. Malaria can be the biggest killer especially in the vulnerable, so we distribute mosquito nets as part of the program. A net costs about £10.

We are hoping to put in place some preventive measures to curb the above diseases.

Thank you all and any support to curb this will be highly appreciated.

Help raise money for health projects in Turkana https://app.goodhub.com/turkanahealth 

Nariokotome Primary Health Programme

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