USAID comes to the aid of final year medical students

Donation of personal protective equipment by USAID.

The University of Nairobi (UoN) School of Medicine received Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) support worth 12 million Kenya shillings from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

The PPEs were handed over to UoN Vice Chancellor, Prof. Stephen Kiama by Mark Meassick, the Mission Director of USAID Kenya and East Africa on 16th September, 2020.

The assistance is a major boost to final year students studying Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) at the School of Medicine. They were in the final year of completing their training before the corona virus disease (COVID-19) broke out leading to closure of learning institutions.

The more than 300 students are in their clinical years and will now be able to complete their medical training. Sixth years will transition to internship in various hospitals in the country while fifth years will transition to their final year.

In his speech, Meassick said the support was an initial initiative for USAID to build a stronger partnership with UoN.

“We look forward to using this as a platform for continuing to work together. We would love to hear from the students about how they are doing,” Meassick said.

He said the support was timely in that the students need to be involved in as many practicals as possible before being released into the job market.

“Practicals are very good, getting out there and being able to interact with patients is really important,” Meassick said.

Meassick stressed on the need for accountability and transparency in the use of the PPEs.

UoN Vice Chancellor Prof. Kiama was thankful to USAID for their kind gesture that aligns with his reform agenda aimed at taking the University to greater heights.

“Our reform agenda is meant to add value to staff, students and our partners and collaborators, you being one of them. How we walk together to use these materials and use them well is part of adding value to you,” Prof. Kiama said.

On his part, College of Health Sciences Principal, Prof. James Machoki assured the USAID team that the PPEs will be used for the right purpose and that there will be accountability and transparency.

The initiative was spearheaded by Prof. Fredrick Otieno, Dean School of Medicine.

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