Dr. J. Kitulu: National Chairlady
“I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow human beings, those sound of mind and body as well as the infirm.” The Hippocratic Oath We are living in a crucial time for Kenya. A time when the decisions we make could deliver or sabotage our aspirations for progress. Progress which we already defined for ourselves in Vision 2030 and which we continue to be committed to. In 1990 Kenya’s mortality rate for children under five was 296 per 1,000 live births. The rate for infant mortality was 64 per 1,000 live births. Today, under five mortality stands at 49 and infant mortality at 36. No doubt we have made progress as a country. But we are not making progress in all the areas that need the most attention, there’s a lot to be done. Maternal mortality was at 490 in 1990 and today is at 510. Our age standardized mortality rate for non-communicable diseases hasn’t changed much since 2000. And we need to do a whole lot more to address the root causes of stunting in children under 5 such as civic education, access to affordable food for a balanced diet and extreme poverty. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development provides us with 17 interconnected goals which are universal and interdependent. By reaching for the targets in these goals, our country can make progress in addressing the root causes of extreme poverty, hunger and high inequality. Although the most prominent health goal is SDG 3 “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”, many other goals have an impact on the health of our people and must be addressed in tandem. For instance, poverty has a direct impact on quality of life and is responsible for many communicable and non-communicable diseases that are a challenge in developing countries. Hunger causes life long problems for children who are stunted in their childhood resulting in cognitive and developmental challenges that contribute to the burden of a society trying to emerge out of poverty. Insecurity and conflict have a direct impact on health as do unplanned cities, gender inequality, climate change, disasters and many other challenges to livelihoods and quality of life. Challenges which the 2030 Agenda addresses through the goals framework. As Kenya submits itself to review at the High Level Political Forum in June 2017, Goal 3 will be one of the goals against which we will be reviewed. In addition to the targets we are working to meet on universal health care, maternal and infant mortality, universal access to reproductive health services, we are also committed to meeting targets that address reduction in road traffic accidents, deaths caused by environmental pollution and substance abuse. In addition, we are committed to target 3.C which is critical to the means of implementation for our country’s healthcare agenda; “Substantially increase health financing and the recruitment, development, training and retention of the health workforce in developing countries, especially in least developed countries and small island developing States” In this era when the SDGs are being domesticated the wisdom of every medical practitioner will be invaluable. We must show up and play our role. We must continue to speak authoritatively to policy in all these areas that have touch points with the health of our people. From the environment, to transportation and resource allocation decisions being made by our governments. That we have brought evidence based thinking to clinical practice is not in doubt but we must also now bring that same rigor to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, our health policies and the county integrated development plans if the country is to achieve Vision 2030 or the SDGs. As we have stated time and again, Kenya’s medical practitioners are committed to their call and the Hippocratic oath. We are members of society with special obligations to all and therefore must continue to work towards the strengthening of the country’s health system in order to ensure Kenyan’s receive that which is guaranteed them under the Constitution of Kenya 2010.
Dr Ndanya S W
I take this opportunity to welcome you to this 45th Kenya Medical association annual scientific conference in Nanyuki, Laikipia county.
This conference offers us a forum to discuss different scientific topics all in line with the all important sustainable development goals( SDGs). Although this is a medical conference participants from different sectors touched by these goals will be participating and I believe this will spice the conference and enrich the scientific menu.
As the conference unfolds the SDGs will stop being theory and fiction but rather become practical and factual. We will all see how the SDGs apply locally and also in the international stage.
As we discuss all the science of SDGs I encourage all of you to sample the great laikipia countryside . Laikipia in general and Nanyuki specifically boast a place in the world tourism map, I dare all of you to look it up in tourism sites.
The air is fresh, the people are friendly, the topography is gental and the sunrise is magical. The equator hugs the town at its bosom and the great mount Kenya is a permanent resident of this region. Hospitality is at its best here and one needs to be warned that if you have a feeble heart you can get addicted to this place. As one who became a victim to this addiction I encourage all of you to take this opportunity to stay and tour Nanyuki/Laikipia before during and after the conference. NB; not all addictions are bad.