Over ten mothers and their newly born babies have been detained by St. Akidiva Hospital, in Suna West sub-county of Migori over failure to pay medical bills. The mothers include two whose newly born babies died in the facility said clarity on reference was not availed as they were referred from other facilities whose workers are on strike or overpopulated yet their Linda Mama and NHIF were rejected. George Odhiambo who lost his child in the facility and had earlier given time to bury him said that they arrived at the hospital a week ago and after successful delivery through C-section could not leave with his wife because of the unpaid bill. He said the hospital required between Ksh 10,000 to Ksh. 30,000 from them but not allowed to go and look for money adding that they are only allowed access to the toilet and to wash clothes. Bernard Odhiambo and Kevin Arwa said they’ve been forced to look for other sources of funds yet they were informed that NHIF and Linda Mama will cater to all bills. They claimed that their bills had accumulated yet they still have a balance. According to the hospital’s director Dr. Idagiza Akidiva, they received a circular from NHIF offices not to discharge any patient urging the government to sort out technicalities so that they have smooth operation and patients are released.

Story by: Basil Okoth