In Summary
  • Dr Wanjiku, an embryologist, said there are only nine fertility centres in the country.
  • Only one fertility centre is based in Mombasa with the rest in Nairobi and they don’t open daily.
  • In sub-Saharan Africa, infertility is caused by infections in more than 85 per cent of women.

Two in every 10 couples suffer from infertility, data has shown.

Kenya is said to have made great strides in birth control programmes, but not the treatment of infertility, shows the data from Kenya Fertility Society.

Led by Prof Koigi Kamau, the society's chairman, and Dr Pauline Wanjiku, experts said an estimated 4.2 million Kenyans require interventions to conceive.

Speaking during an infertility awareness media training held by Merck Foundation at Intercontinental Hotel in Nairobi, Dr Wanjiku, an embryologist, said there are only nine fertility centres in the country and only one is based in Mombasa with the rest in Nairobi and they don’t open daily.

COST TOO HIGH

“The cost of having to travel far to get treated is too high and the treatment is also not affordable for mwananchi,” she said.

Dr Wanjiku said Kenya also has an acute shortage of embryologists, with most of them practising in private hospitals.

“When we invest more on infertility, we will be able to help more Kenyans who are suffering in silence either because they don’t have the money or the hospitals are far and costly,” she said.

She said most of the abortions are procured under unsafe conditions hence interfering with reproductive organs. She said many women who have procured un-safe abortions do not bother to seek treatment, making it even harder for them to give birth.

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