Thirty-nine counties earmarked more money to health than any other function in the last financial year, a Nation Newsplex analysis of budgets reveals.
The eight counties in which health did not top the allocations were Kakamega, Laikipia, Mandera, Mombasa, Nairobi, Samburu, Taita-Taveta and Turkana. However, Mombasa and Nairobi still spent more on health than any other sector.
Although in Machakos health was apportioned a bigger slice than any other department, it ranked fourth in the expenditure budget.
Health, along with agriculture and water, are some of the key services functions that were devolved to counties from the national government.
During the financial year 2015/16, the same number of counties did not have health as their top allocation.
Murang’a had the most costly individual health project in allocation, with Sh435 million being assigned to drugs and other supplies. This was 22 per cent of the budget allocated for the 10 major projects.
They were Garissa, Laikipia, Migori, Narok, Samburu, Turkana, Vihiga and Mandera. But in Migori and Samburu, more was still spent on health than any other function.
In Kisumu, health topped the budget allocations, but was number three in expenditure.
A deeper look at the budgets reveals that counties now prioritise health more than in the initial years of devolution.
In the 2014/15 fiscal year, 20 counties (43 per cent) did not have health as their largest allocation. They were Bungoma, Busia, Embu, Garissa, Kajiado, Kakamega, Kirinyaga, Laikipia, Mandera, Marsabit, Migori, Mombasa, Nairobi, Narok, Samburu, Taita-Taveta, Tana River, Uasin Gishu, Wajir and West Pokot