One of the requirements for university admission is a mandatory medical report. And in every academic year, students are required to pay medical fees running into several thousands of shillings.
Parents part with their hard-earned money with the understanding that if their children fall sick, the university will provide quality medical services. But learners in most public universities do not get value for money.
A majority of health facilities in our universities lack doctors; it is clinical officers and nurses who run the show. Some of these practitioners have very bad customer service, including being openly rude, cruel and judgemental.
Instead of focusing on the medical cases at hand, they jump into conclusions, especially in cases involving girls. And as if there is a template prescription, almost every case is treated with Panadol because that is what is available in most of these facilities.
The only other readily available medical supply is condoms.
The rogue staff usually keep patients waiting for hours. Some do physical exams as they chat or talk on their smartphones.
Most of the medical practitioners in varsity dispensaries do not take samples and run lab tests. Surely, can typhoid be diagnosed with naked eyes?
Due to the wanting services, some parents have lost their children on campus in mysterious circumstances. A recent example is the death of a student at a public university in Bungoma County, which was attributed to poor medical attention.
The leaders of the university’s student union said their colleague died because their dispensary lacked the drugs he required.
Quality medical care
University students, just like any other Kenyan, have a right to quality medical care under the constitution. Student leaders should stop “slaying” and taking selfies with politicians and address our suffering.
Joining comrades during protest is not what we elected them to do; we put them in office to avert those protests by addressing our concerns.
Deputy vice chancellors in charge of student affairs should also learn to leave the comfort of their air-conditioned offices and inspect university health facilities.
Hosea, 20, is a second-year student at Moi University.