Kenyan nurses given chance to work in UK under new Kenya-UK health agreements

KENYA – Unemployed nurses and health workers from Kenya will have the chance to work in the UK as part of a new scheme requested by the Government of Kenya and launched by President Kenyatta during his visit to London.

In a programme to share knowledge and expertise, Kenyan health professionals and health managers will benefit from a special route to work in the UK, before returning to work in Kenya’s health sector.

The agreement is open to Kenya’s surplus health workers who are qualified but unemployed, ensuring the process is managed for Kenya’s benefit.

UK Health Secretary, Sajid Javid, and Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Labor Cooperation, Simon Chelugui, signed the agreement on Kenyan recruitment into the UK’s National Health Service.

The special programme came at the request of the Government of Kenya to channel nurses currently unemployed into jobs.

The President also witnessed the signing of the Kenya-UK Health Alliance, which will bring together UK and Kenyan institutions; universities, teaching hospitals, cooperating on health partnerships.

One of the flagship partnerships is on improving cancer treatment for Kenyans, thanks to a tie-up between Kenyatta University Teaching Research and Referral Hospital and the University of Manchester/Christie NHS Foundation Trust.

It will help improve prevention and management of cancer in Kenya, and promote Kenya as a regional hub for cancer treatment.

This comes after a flurry of announcements of UK support for Kenya’s COVID-19 response, as part of a flourishing Health Partnership, signed by the UK’s Foreign Secretary.

Prime Minister Johnson confirmed the donation of 817,000 COVID-19 AstraZeneca vaccine doses for Kenya, half a bilateral donation, and half a UK donation through the COVAX facility.

Earlier this month, UK announced new support on genomic sequencing with KEMRI to tackle emerging COVID-19 variants.

Kenyan and British scientists at KEMRI and Oxford University were closely involved in the development of the AstraZeneca vaccine, through trials of the vaccine through KEMRI Kilifi.

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