The Star (Nairobi)

9 November 2012

Kenya: Sh26 Million Mental Ward Set for Moi Referral

Some of the new equipment donated to the Moi Referral Hospital by donors from the United States. They will be installed in the new units.Photo/Mathews Ndanyi

Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital is to invest Sh26 million for putting an ultra-modern mental health unit. It is expected to serve the increasing number of patients with mental related illnesses.

The hospital's CEO John Kibosia yesterday said the hospital has been recording an increase in the number of patients with mental illness.

"Mental health is a reality and all the forms of stigma associated with the illness," said Kibosia. "It is an illness just like any other medical problem. We should not stigmatise people suffering from the illness."

He said most of the mental health related problems can be treated if detected and dealt with early enough. Kibosia said the hospital has the expertise to deal with the mental patients and the expansion of the unit will come in handy and tackle the problem. The hospital has contracted Harmo Engineering and Building Construction Company to put up the facility.

The facility will comprise two wards accommodating up to 70 patients, consulting and counselling rooms, a tutorial hall, occupational therapy, offices, entertainment and dining rooms, nursing station and a playground.

"This is a big project for the hospital. We plan to work on it as fast as we can so that the patients can begin using it said the director of the construction firm Harrisson Mogere. The facility is expected to be completed by May 2013.

Kibosia commissioned the construction work and said the hospital is systematically expanding and improving its facilities.

Kibosia said the move to improve the mental health wards was a milestone to the hospital's development plans which aim to better the available health infrastructure.

The MTRH CEO urged the public to avoid stigmatising people with mental illnesses and instead help the victims seek medication.

The Hospital is currently putting up two other projects concurrently including the Outpatient Wing at the Private Wing II and the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Unit/Rehabilitation Centre. The two projects are expected to be complete within next year. Kibosia said the state will support the project.

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