KEMRI-Wellcome Highlights Health Equity Issues During Equity Week

KEMRI-Wellcome Trust participated in this year’s Equity Week between 11th and 15 November. Convened by the International Budget Partnership, Equity Week brings together stakeholders drawn from the national government, county government, community groups and other agencies to reflect on equity and equality issues particularly in resource mobilization and distribution in the country. There were two regional forums, the Western Regional Forum in Busia on 11th November; the North Rift Regional Forum on 13th November in Baringo; and a National Forum on 15th November in Nairobi.

At the Busia Forum Evelyn Kabia, from the Health Economics Research Unit (HERU) began by narrating a story of a woman with disability living in poverty .The story illustrated inequities in access to free healthcare provided by government programs that target the poor. In addition, Evelyn and Jacob Kazungu, also from the HERU, led group discussions on equity in health. Their discussions revolved around equity in access to healthcare, and financial risk protection, particularly for people from low income groups.

At the National Forum held at Ufungamano House in Nairobi, Evelyn and Jacob were joined by Paul Ouma from the Population Health Unit (PHU) to lead discussions on equity in accessing healthcare, financial risk protection as well as mapping county level variation in; access to health care, under 5 mortality and other vulnerabilities such as malaria risk and child growth.

KEMRI-Wellcome’s presentations were also supported by a policy brief that sought to deconstruct equity issues in health in the simplest of terms. The brief highlighted inequities in under-five mortality among Kenyan counties drawn from Peter Macharia’s (PHU) research.