NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 20 – Kenya is currently hosting a Dutch healthcare business delegation of about 20 companies which is in search of partnerships and investment opportunities in the country’s health sector.
The delegation includes universities, NGOs and companies that are scouting for opportunities in e-health, telemedicine, expertise in hospitals construction, medical devices, health financing solutions and training and education.
Dutch Vice Minister of Health Erik Gerritsen says the visit follows a study which identified Kenya’s health sector as a promising market for such partnerships and business opportunities.
“Kenya’s health sector is promising in that it is budding which creates a lot of opportunities. Where it is right now means it has the potential of doing much better that some health sectors of developed countries,” Gerritsen said.
The three-day business mission, which kicked of Wednesday will include a health seminar, a tour to a public level 5 hospital and visits to the Gertrudes Children Hospital and Nairobi Hospital among other institutions.
Kenya alongside the United States and China are the only countries where the Dutch are intending to establish such initiatives.
“The economic relations between the two countries are strong with the Netherlands being the third largest export destination of Kenyan products. Netherlands is also a leader when it comes to health matters, which means Kenya has a lot to benefit from.”
Gerritsen at the same time cautioned Kenya as it embarks on growing its health sector. He said Kenya should beware of going the Dutch route which saw the country concentrate on curative measures instead of preventive measures. “We are in so much trouble, especially when it comes to communicable diseases such as cancer and obesity as we are now investing heavily on curative measures.”
Kenya’s health sector currently faces enormous deficiencies in coverage and infrastructure with estimates revealing that 32.5 million Kenyans lack any form of basic insurance and are treated in sub-standard facilities.