THE Italian government has commissioned the rehabilitation Suba District Hospital in Homa Bay county.
The refurbishment will cost Sh14million. The expansion will involve the completion of a 20-bed men ward, 20-bed women ward, drugs store, the perimeter fence and rebuilding of a new incinerator.
Italian ambassador Paola Imperiale at the weekend said the infrastructural expansion is one of the projects supported through the Kenya-Italy Debt for Development Programme (KIDDP).
The envoy who was accompanied by Medical Services minister Anyang' Nyong'o and KIDDP's programme coordinator Simona Lusso yesterday said the Italian government hopes to "promote better healthcare and access for all Kenyans."
"The KIDDP partnership with the Medical Services ministry is geared towards supporting the improvement of health services by funding the rehabilitation, upgrading and equipping all district hospitals in Kenya," said Imperiale.
She said KIDDP will also train provincial and district health staff.
KIDDP has so far rehabilitated seven hospitals at a cost of Sh176,036,117, said the ambassador.Imperiale said the debt programme has been supporting projects in the health, education, urban development and water sectors, through the respective ministries.
"We have set aside more than Sh4 billion for this project," said the envoy."More than 70 projects have so far been supported through this initiative."
She said in Nyanza, the programme is supporting the construction of two youth polytechnics, Waondo and Nyagwethe and three water projects of Sindo, Asembo Ndori and Suba Rural.
Other project components she said included; construction of a septic tank, purchase of medical equipment, furniture and computers as well as monitoring and supervision.
Nyong'o said the Kenyan government was concerned about the shortage of nurses in all public hospitals in the country.He said the country faces a shortage of 33,000 nurses in public facilities.
"Currently we have a total of 34,000 nurses in public facilities instead of 67, 000 required," said the minister.
"We hope with the inception of the Cord government in April, we shall be able to address the shortage as well as promote modern ambulatory systems in all hospitals across the country," Nyong'o said.