Ambassador Elkanah Odembo visits Beth Mugo in Pennsylvania


On Friday 23rd February, Ambassador Elkanah Odembo visited Hon. Beth Mugo; the Minister for Public Health & Sanitation who has just completed the first phase of preventive treatment for breast cancer in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Ambassador found the Minister looking well and in remarkably good spirits in the company of her husband Ambassador Nicholas Mugo.
Hon. Mugo shared with the Ambassador that she had held discussions with Senior Vice President of the Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania on a proposal where the University would support a cancer program in Kenya. The Minister also affirmed that the Cancer Prevention and Control Bill was up for debate in Parliament and hence the government was committed to prevention and control of cancers.
Ambassador Odembo in return briefed the Minister on discussions he has held with a number of US based Cancer Institutions like the MD Anderson Cancer Center & others, where Kenya would benefit in Cancer research, screening, control and prevention. The Ambassador also informed the minister that there were several Kenyans in the US who were Cancer researchers and Oncologists who were willing to work with the government for the betterment of cancer management in the country. The Ambassador further stated that it is critical and essential that the Government of Kenya establish an infrastructure that would facilitate the engagement of Kenyan Medics in the US. These Diaspora Medics have keen interest to support Kenya?s effort to improve and enhance health care and health services, especially the Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs).
Hon. Mugo supported the Ambassador?s views and reiterated that linkages are very important and she would liaise with her colleague in the Ministry of Medical Services; Hon. Anyang? Nyong?o to tap into the Diaspora?s expertise and capacity in order to enhance Kenya?s Health system?s ability to manage cancer through prevention, early detection and prompt affordable treatment.
This courtesy call took place a day after former cabinet Minister Hon. Njenga Karume passed away after a long battle with prostate cancer. Hon. Mugo and Hon. Nyong?o have both come out publicly that they have been diagnosed and treated for cancer. Minister Mugo was also optimistic that sharing her experience would help to enlighten Kenyans on the importance of recognizing possible warning signs of cancer and taking prompt action for early diagnosis and treatment.
The minister also said she would be returning to Kenya in a few days time, and Ambassador Odembo observed that Minister Mugo has actually continued to attend to some of her Ministry duties even while in the US.

Hon Beth Mugo with Ambassador Odembo

From left-Ambassador Nicholas Mugo,Joyce Gacuga,far right Ambassador Odembo and Beth Mugo




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