KENYA ECONOMY NEWS                                                                           16 June 2015

Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH), which is Kenya’s largest referral hospital, has decided to look up to the private sector for a funds to enable them construct a US$ 182m public paediatric hospital. The hospital construction project will see KNH increase admission from the current’s capacity of 300 children at a time. The hospital has been experiencing congestion as it only has a 200-bed ward for children.

According to KNH, the planned paedriatric hospital will be developed as from the beginning of the next financial year through a public-private partnership (PPP) model. It will be the first public paediatric hospital for KNH.

The hospital construction project will constitute a Ksh. 5bn 600-bed children hospital, 300 bed private unit and accommodation houses for all the staff. The costs will total up to US$ 139m and the remaining US$ 43m will be used in the ICT department.

“We have an increasing number of patients seeking specialized care at our facility, so we need to expand and develop our infrastructure to serve them better,” KNH chief executive officer Lily Tare said.

The ICT master plan from the private sector will enable automation of operations and setting up of a telemedicine center. This will in turn help improve delivery of service.

The private firms to be shortlisted to finance the hospital construction project will operate the facility for a certain period after which operation will be transfered to government. During this time of operation, the private ventures will keep 60 per cent of profits according to Mrs Tare.

The proposed PPP model for the new hospital construction project is anticipated to be good news in regard to funding issues that have been affecting the hospital sector for such a long period of time. The public hospital only receives US$ 1.6m once a year from the government for development purposes.

Kenyatta National Hospital is Kenya’s oldest and largest public hospital having a capacity of handling up to 1,800 beds.

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