Aug 10, 2022

Mawazo Writing Africa

Writing about the main

Kenya flags off first cohort of nurses to UK

Kenya’s Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe on Monday signed off 19 Kenyan nurses recruited to work in the UK.

This follows the bilateral agreement between Kenya and the UK signed by President Uhuru Kenyatta and the UK Prime Minister was signed by Boris Johnson in July last year.

Mr Kagwe said a rigorous process was followed to obtain the final list of 3,329 nurses who applied last year. Of the 19 who qualify, 13 will be attached to Oxford University Hospital and leave the country on June 28.

The remaining six, whose place of work is not yet known, will travel to the UK in two weeks. Also in the pipeline are about 80 qualified nurses who will be part of the second cohort. : Envoy

Mr Kagwe urged other nurses to also look for such opportunities and apply.

“Kenyan health workers should be open-minded. The fact that you were educated in Kenya should not limit you to Kenya. Think big and explore opportunities outside the country. They don’t rehearse life. In this one shot you have, expand your thinking and work in other places,” he said.

He reiterated Kenya’s need to be a health tourism hub, saying that recruitment of nurses to the UK demonstrates the quality of the training that has migrated from our local institutions.

Share your expertise

“Because of the fact that Kenya is striving to become a destination for To become health tourism, we invest in this sector. This can only happen if the recipients of the opportunities are young people, who will share their expertise from abroad and mentor those who remain in the country,” the CS said.

The ministry has not disclosed how much the nurses are going to earn. The Department of Health has since set up a task force that will help recruit subsequent cohorts of UK nurses.

The Government is also in the process of appointing a Health Attaché who will be stationed at the Kenyan Embassy in London by September.

Speaking at the event, the British High Commissioner, Jane Marriot, congratulated the nurses and said they had won the offer because of their competence and quality training.

“It would we loved seeing a larger number of nurses being part of this flag but it made sense to start small and with one employer (Oxford University Hospital Trust) to ensure the right systems and policies are in place, before it expands to more employers,” she said.

Read:Kenyan nurses exist en does not have the English test for jobs in the UK

“The UK is not just about filling gaps in the National Health Service (NHS) or providing job opportunities for qualified unemployed Kenyan health workers. It’s about increasing the number and quality of health workers in Kenya, which in turn will facilitate the implementation of UHC,” she added.

Mr Kagwe said Kenya is also in talks with other countries like Italy and Kuwait who want to recruit our nurses. CS insisted the deployment is to ensure there is no shortage of employment for the 11,000+ nurses who graduate each year.

“As a government, we don’t want to see our many registered nurses becoming unemployed , if they are urgently needed abroad. We are currently receiving a number of inquiries from different countries for Kenyan nurses. This requires a mechanism to manage the process as we also review and control the shortage of specialist nurses and midwives in the country,” he said was appointed as an assistant head nurse at a hospital under the NHS Foundation Trust.

“Like Mercy, carry our flag as high as you carry out your duties in your assigned jobs,” he told nurses.