Timeline of healthcare in Kenya
This is a timeline of healthcare in Kenya, focusing especially on modern science-based medicine healthcare. Major events such as crises, policies and organizations are included.
|Prior to 1888||Tribal medicine is performed in the territory. Use of herbal medicines by some tribes dates back to as far as 3000 BC.|
|1888–1962||Under British rule, modern hospitals start to be founded, beginning with Mombasa Hospital and Kenyatta National Hospital. User fees are introduced in all public facilities.|
|1963–1980s||After independence from Great Britain, Kenya works with the purpose of attaining a universal healthcare system. Notwithstanding uneven results, in this period the number of healthcare facilities quadruple and life expectancy extends from 40 to 62 years. Child survival rates also improve.|
|1990s–2000s||Both a previous economic crisis and the intensification of the HIV/AIDS epidemics in Africa hit dramatically the Kenyan population and many past achievements and improvements are reversed. Life expectancy declines and infant mortality increases.|
|2000s–present||Adult HIV prevalence starts to fall and an increasing financial support from donors stop the reversal of health rates. Life expectancy returns to its ascending trend.|
|Year/period||Type of Event||Event||Location|
|1882-1884||Crisis||Famine breaks out in Kenya, and smallpox epidemic follows. Mortality rate is estimated to be massive.|
|1891||Organization (hospital)||Mombasa Hospital is founded.||Mombasa|
|1898||Crisis||Smallpox epidemic occurs in Kenya, again during a famine. The combination is estimated to have killed up to half of the entire population of the country at the time.|
|1900||Policy||The colonial government passes the East Africa Plague Ordinance in response to earlier outbreaks of bubonic plague.|
|1901||Organization (hospital)||Kenyatta National Hospital is founded.||Nairobi|
|1906||Policy||The colonial government passes the Plague and Cholera Ordinance in response to frequent plagues in Kisumu. Segregation zoning laws are implemented.|
|1908||Organization (hospital)||P.C.E.A. Kikuyu Hospital is founded.||Kikuyu|
|1909||Organization (hospital)||P.C.E.A. Tumutumu Hospital is founded.||Karatina|
|1910||Organization (hospital)||Mathari Hospital is founded. Even today it is the only psychiatric hospital in Kenya.||Nairobi|
|1914||Organization (hospital)||Nairobi Hospital is founded.||Nairobi|
|1915||Organization (hospital)||A.I.C. Kijabe Hospital is founded.||Kijabe|
|1918||Crisis||Spanish influenza is introduced in Kenya through the port of Mombasa, devastating much of the country. By 1919, the death toll reaches more than 5.5 percent of the Kenyan population.|
|1937||Organization (hospital)||Consolata Hospital is founded.||Nyeri|
|1942||Crisis||Bubonic plague breaks out and kills 529 people.||Nairobi|
|1944||Organization (hospital)||Aga Khan Hospital, Mombasa founded.||Mombasa|
|1953||Policy||A Division of Health Education (DHE) is created.|
|1957||Organization (hospital)||Nanyuki Cottage Hospital is founded.||Nanyuki|
|1957||Organization (hospital)||Aga Khan Hospital Kisumu is founded.||Kisumu|
|1958||Organization (hospital)||Aga Khan Hospital Nairobi is founded.||Nairobi|
|1962||Policy||The Family Planning Association of Kenya is established, with the Ministry of Health taking coordination and supervisory roles.|
|1963||Political change||Kenya gains independence from Great Britain. The new government proposes to provide free healthcare for the entire population, in the belief that a healthy population could boast economic development.|
|1965||Policy||Kenya formalizes its "free care for all" plan and abolishes using fees for people seeking care in public clinics, which is managed at the local level. Health services are provided for free and funded predominantly through tax revenue.|
|1966||Policy||An insurance scheme is established. Kenyans who are formally employed and whose income exceeds a set threshold participate in the National Hospital Insurance Fund.|
|1967||Policy||The National Family Planning Program – the first for a sub-Saharan African country – is launched and managed by NGO Family Planning Association of Kenya.|
|1971||Crisis||First cholera epidemic occurs in Kenya. After this outbreak, cholera epidemics erupt somewhere in Kenya almost annually.|
|1976||Policy||Formal training of health education officers begins, though main attention is focused in reducing fertility rates.|
|1982||Policy||The National Council for Population and Development (NCPD) is established in order to reform the program to integrate maternal and child health services.|
|1984||Crisis||First HIV/AIDS patient is identified in Kenya.|
|1984||Organization (hospital)||Mariakani Cottage Hospital is founded.||South B|
|1989||Policy||User fees are introduced in all levels of care due to failure to sustain universal healthcare. Poor economic performance, inadequate financial resources and declining budgets are some of the reasons given to justify the introduction of user fees.|
|1990||Policy||User fees are suspended in all public health facilities. Waivers and exemption are put in place to protect the poor and vulnerable. Poor policy design and implementation lead to failure.|
|1991||Policy||User fees are reintroduced in phases. Children under five, special conditions/services like immunisation and tuberculosis are exempted from payment. User fees continue to exist in Kenya at all levels of care.|
|1994||Policy||The Government of Kenya (GOK) approves the Kenya Health Policy Framework (KHPF) in order to develop and manage health services.|
|1994||Organization (hospital)||Metropolitan Hospital is founded.||Eastlands|
|1994||Achievement||Kenya’s last indigenous case of dracunculiasis is reported.|
|1994||Report||The first National Health Accounts report shows that government's share of national health expenditure covers the 29%, donors 8%, households 53% and private firms 10%.|
|1995||Organization||The AIDS, Population and Health Integrated Assistance project (APHIA) is launched in Kenya by USAID in order to support the integrated delivery of health services, including: HIV/AIDS; maternal, child and neonatal health; reproductive health; family planning; malaria and tuberculosis.|
|1995||Organization (hospital)||MEWA Hospital is founded.||Mombasa|
|1996||Policy/organization||The Kenya Health Policy Framework Implementation Action Plan is developed and the Health Sector Reform Secretariat (HSRS) is established.|
|1997||Organization (hospital)||Diani Beach Hospital is founded.||Diani|
|1997||Crisis||HIV is declared a national disaster by the Kenyan government. 1 million people are positive out of a total population of 29 million at the time.|
|1997||Organization (hospital)||Barnet Memorial Hospital is founded.||Kabarnet|
|1998||Organization (hospital)||AIC-CURE Children's Hospital is founded.|
|2001||Organization (hospital)||The Nairobi Women's Hospital- Hurlingham is founded.||Nairobi|
|2001||Report||The number of hospitals/maternities reaches 500, in addition to 611 health centers throughout the country.|
|2001||Organization (hospital)||Coast Hospice hospital is founded.||Mombasa|
|2001||Organization||Barchando HIV/AIDS and Poverty Eradication Group is established with the purpose of curbing the spread of HIV/AIDS in the Barchando community.||Siaya County|
|2001-2002||Report||Out-of-pocket payments contribute to the 51.1% of total health expenditure in Kenya. Government spending accounts for 29.6% and Donors' contributions account for 16%.|
|2002||Report||Kenya spends 5.1% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on healthcare, compared to an average of 9.8% for the OECD during the same period.|
|2003||Report||Malaria is found to be the most common diagnosis in both out-patient and in-patient care.|
|2003||Organization||USAID launches the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief. The program is focused on prevention, treatment and care.|
|2004||Policy||The Minister for Health Charity declares a new policy for user fees at primary healthcare facilities. The policy declaration states that all services needed/rendered (including diagnosis, lab and pharmaceuticals) would cost only KSh 10 and KSh 20, respectively, at the dispensary level (the lowest level of healthcare in Kenya) and at the health center level (the second level of healthcare facility). Children under five, the poor, special conditions/services like malaria and tuberculosis are exempted from payment.|
|2005-2006||Report||Out-of-pocket payments contribute to the 35.9% of total health expenditure in Kenya. Government spending accounts for 29.3% and Donors' contributions account for 31%.|
|2007||Policy||All fees for deliveries at public health facilities are abolished.|
|2007||Policy||Kenya articulates a strategic approach to facilitate partnerships for health and starts to receive funds from the World Bank, the World Health Organization and the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) to facilitate health-related planning and expenditure tracking.|
|2008||Organization (NGO)||Better Poverty Eradication Organisation is established. One of its main activities include developing HIV/AIDS prevention strategies and assisting with income generation in Kenya.|
|2009||Organization (hospital)||The Nairobi Women's Hospital-Adams is founded.||Nairobi|
|2009||Report||6% of adults are infected with HIV/AIDS, (compared to 8% in 2001).|
|2009||Policy||The National school-based deworming programme (NSBDP) is launched jointly by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST), the Ministry of Health (MoH) and funded by the Children's Investment Fund Foundation with the purpose of eliminating Soil-transmitted helminthiasis and schistosomiasis as a national public health problem in Kenya.|
|2010||Policy||A health sector services fund (HSSF) that compensates facilities for lost revenue associated with user fee removal is introduced. Dispensaries and health centers receive funds directly into their bank accounts from the treasury.|
|2010||Policy||New Constitution of Kenya replaces the 1969 constitution. It states a legal framework to ensure a comprehensive rights-based approach to healthcare. It provides that "every person has a right to the highest attainable standard of health, which includes reproductive health rights". It further states that "a person shall not be denied emergency medical treatment and that the State shall provide appropriate social security to persons who are unable to support themselves and their dependents".|
|2011||Organization||The government of Kenya enters into an alliance with the Peace Corps, USAID, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to identify a workable strategy for healthcare in the country.|
|2014||Organization||The World Bank, along with other global partners, launches the 2014-2018 Kenya Country Partnership Strategy, with aims at providing greater access to healthcare and wellness services in Kenya. Women and girls living in poverty, in addition to maternal, neonatal and under-5 mortality, are special targets for the organization.|
|2016||Report||Life expectancy in Kenya is estimated at 64.02 years, being ranked 188th out of 228 political subdivisions.|
- Health in Kenya
- Healthcare in Kenya
- Timeline of healthcare in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
- Timeline of global health
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