Kenyan Nursing Student in the US Returns Home With Team to Give Medical Service to the Poor

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Ms Grace Mbuthia, 23, is in Kenya on a mission to provide free medical checkups to marginalised communities.

She has started with a small village in the Rift Valley on the outskirts of Nakuru Town where she spent a good part of her childhood.

From a makeshift hospital at the Trinity Church in Kiamunyeki Village, the bubbly student-nurse who resides in the US is to offer her professional services for free as well as her pocket-money to buy drugs and finance surgery and specialised treatment.

She moves around with enthusiasm and unbridled energy coordinating activities at the “hospital”.

Some patients, she found out, cannot afford the prescriptions given by doctors at the Rift Valley Provincial General Hospital. Such people, she says, she simply gives money to buy the medicine after a brief check-up.

When the Nation visited Ms Mbuthia’s medical camp, there was a 10-year-old boy who had meningitis but whose parents could not afford to seek treatment for.

“It is very sad that these are the scenes being replicated in millions of poor households across the country. Someone definitely has to do something, and I will not sit around waiting to find out who that is. I aim to do it myself,” Ms Mbuthia said.

She has come together with four other nurses, all of them her colleagues at St Luke’s College of Nursing in Kansas, Missouri, where she studies.

With her are also several clinical officers from the provincial hospital. They have already attended to 800 people in a span of days, and more are streaming in. A tent outside the church serves as the waiting lounge.

“I would like to make this an annual event, and not just for this village, but other villagers countrywide. I would also like to set up medical centres where the poor can receive affordable healthcare, if possible, free,” says Ms Mbuthia whose family has permanent residency status in the US.

She attributes her motivation to what happened to her when she was seven years: She would have frequent fainting spells and often pass out.

“She would pass out wherever she was, even when she was at school or standing somewhere. We took her to see many doctors in the country who failed to find anything wrong with her,” says her father, Mr Stephen Muhota Mbuthia.

Visiting missionaries from the US who pitched camp at Kijabe Mission Hospital to give free medical check-ups changed her life for good. They diagnose her with a heart disease, and catered for her treatment.

Source: Daily Nation

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