, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 15- Deputy President William Ruto has said plans are underway to expand access to cancer diagnosis and treatment services through the National Health Insurance Fund across the country.
Ruto says cancer is among major ailments that have claimed many lives in the country, saying it was the reason why in the Jubilee manifesto, health was among the first four critical issues that will be tackled in the next five years.
He says the Government would soon come up with legislation in the National Assembly and the Senate to expand NHIF services for cancer patients among other major ailments.
The move, he said was aimed at enhancing cancer diagnosis and treatment at the county level, which remains a major challenge in the country.
“To minimize cases of cancer, we have to make sure that the necessary health infrastructure is put in place to contain increasing cases of cancer in the country,” the DP said.
“This is why we intend to come up with legislation in Parliament to cater for people in dire need of health services including cancer through NHIF,” added Ruto.
The Deputy President said the Government was putting in place mechanisms to increase the number of people covered by NHIF from the current 6.7million to 30 million in the next five years.
Speaking during the requiem mass of the late Kitui West MP Francis Nyenze at the Christ is the Answer Ministries (CITAM) in Karen, Nairobi, on Friday; Ruto said the Government would work towards the attainment of the universal health coverage.
He pointed out that the Government has expanded and equipped two hospitals in each county to also cater for cancer screening and diagnosis as the only way to enhance service delivery for the rural population.
Ruto said he was optimistic that the ongoing efforts to contain the disease will yield fruits.
The Deputy President further described the late Nyenze as a hardworking man whose services will greatly be missed by the society.
He said throughout his career as a politician, the late Nyenze put the interest of the country first ahead of his own or any other political aspirations.
“The late Nyenze was a patriotic Kenyans that put his country first ahead of his own,” he said.
The Deputy President also delivered a message of condolence from President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Senate Minority Leader Moses Wetangula among several MPs also condoled with the family.
Kitui West MP Enock Wambua thanked the Government for standing with the family during this difficult moment.
“On behalf of the family, I wish to sincere thank the Government for standing with us during this hard moment,” said Wambua.
The late Nyenze will be laid to rest on Tuesday next week at his Kyondoni home in Kitui County.