About KANCO

The Kenya AIDS NGOs Consortium (KANCO) is a national membership network of NGOs, CBOs, and FBOs, Private Sector actors, Research and Learning Institutions involved in or that have interest in HIV & AIDS , TB and other public health care concerns in Kenya such as Malaria, Nutrition, Community Harm Reduction(among injecting drug users) among others.

Get In Touch

Kenya AIDS NGOs Consortium (KANCO)
Regent Management Limited Court
Opposite Nairobi Womens Hospital
Argwings Kodhek Road/ Block C
P.O. Box 69866-00400, Nairobi - Kenya
Mobile:+254722203344
Landline: 020 2323533/020 2434615/020 20323506/020 2322657
Email: kanco@kanco.org

Our Vision

Healthy People, Empowered Communities

Our Mission

To improve Health and well- being among communities through capacity building and promotion of innovative leadership

About KANCO

KANCO is a membership organization established in the early 1990s in Kenya with operations in the eastern Africa region. Its membership comprises of Non- Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Community Based Organizations (CBOs), and Faith Based Organizations (FBOs), Network organizations and learning institutions that have a focus on health advocacy and or implementing health programs.

Latest News

KANCO Team representatives at the Beyond Zero Marathon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Inside this issue:

  • KANCO Participates in the Beyond Zero Marathon 2019
  • Beyond Zero Campaign Pictorials
  • Cementing Nutrition Gains in  Mombasa County

To read more download

March 6th, 2019

Joan Mutinda, Policy Advocacy

TB Crisis – The Facts

Tuberculosis (TB) is the world’s top infectious killer  diseases today. According to World Health organization (WHO), TB is the ninth leading cause of death worldwide and the leading cause from a single infectious agent, ranking above HIV/AIDS. Over 25% of TB deaths occur in the African Region. Kenya is one of the 30 high burden countries that together account for more than 80% of the world’s TB cases.  Kenya also faces a triple burden of HIV and TB, while TB remains  the fourth highest cause of death  among infectious diseases.

Key Challenges Facing The Fight Against Today

Multidrug – Resistant TB:

Although Kenya has made great strides in TB control, emergence of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) remains a big challenge in the country and poses a major health security threat and could risk gains made in the fight against TB. The effects are huge. According to the TB patient cost survey, which is in line with the World Health Organization (WHO)  end TB strategy and the Universal Health Coverage (UHC), 62.5% of drug resistant TB (DR-TB) patients lost jobs due to TB. Some of these DR-TB patients have to go through the 6 to 8 months medication regime first before they start the drug resistant regime that runs for 20 months which is very costly. Patients with the DR-TB incur six times higher costs Ksh. 145,109.53 compared to drug sensitive TB (DS-TB) patients Ksh. 25,874.00 (Ministry of health, 2018).  The case of Williamdemonstrates the impact TB is having on ordinary Kenyans and therefore validating the call : Its time to stop TB deaths

William is a TB survivor who had a long journey to be TB-free. William lost his wife from TB after she went through the 6 to 8 month TB treatment re- gime unfortunately she succumbed. After his wife’s death, he started having the same symptoms and he knew right away that he was suffering from TB. He too went through the 6 to 8 month TB treatment regime. William did not get any relief after the 8 months, his health kept deteriorating. He was re- ferred to a county hospital where he was tested with a GeneXpert machine which showed he had DR-TB. This time around he was put on medication for 20 months. The side effects were excruciating. After the 20 months, William fortunately tested negative for TB (Centre of health solutions- Kenya, 2018).

Inadequate testing facilities:

Only few government facilities have the GeneXpert machine and sometimes face shortages of cartridges which forces the health facilities to revert to microscopy testing (Oketch, 2018).  William’s case demonstrates the need to have effective testing facilities in order to detect, initi- ate treatment  and Stop TB Deaths!

Cost and management of TB:

Though TB drugs are free, patients still pay for examinations like X rays and scans. There is also still no clear policy on how to manage TB cas- es for  treatment defaulters. The drugs may be free, but they have to be accompanied by a good diet-vitamin supplement (The standard, 2018). There are more William cases that do not have a happy ending as a huge proportion of people who suffer from TB are from below the poverty line and lack the means to do follow-up screenings and treatment.

Funding:

In spite of the fact that funding has increased through the years, there is still a huge funding gap. Kenya relies on external funding to finance HIV, TB and malaria. An estimated Ksh 77 billion is accounted for by donors which amounts to 92% of the total need estimated at Ksh 84 bil- lion. At the end, the donors invest 1.3 times the total amount of the Ministry of Health budget. This constitutes 3.9% of the total national budg- et for the FY 2017/18.  In 2014/15 financial year, the health allocation rose to 3.8 % from 3.17%, in 2014/15 and 2016/17 it rose to 4.1%. In 2017/18, the allocation fell to 3.9%. Overall, 8% of the budgetary need is not met in HIV and a 26% in TB (Muchangi, 2018).The government needs to add more funding for TB in order to be able to tackle this upcoming new challenges. TB can be fatal, fortunately it is a disease that has a cure.

Ongoing Initiatives

Kenya signed Tuberculosis grants from global fund amounting to Ksh. 6.3 billion for January 2018-June 2021.The funds will support:  Procure- ment of TB medicines ,equipment ,diagnostic supplies and therapeutic feeds; complement government efforts by putting about 338,550 new TB cases on treatment by 2021;provision of medicine to 1,890 drug resistance TB cases until June 2021;short term regimen for treatment of drug resistant TB cases and capacity building of facility/community health workers (National Tuberculosis, Leprosy and lung Disease program, 2019).

It‘s Time To Act- Stop TB Deaths

In addition to the ongoing initiatives above, the following action points could go a long way in stopping TB deaths:

  • Scaling up prevention by addressing the congestion problem at community level and use CHWs to champion the agenda, put in place mechanisms to respond to the risks of the congestion in prisons and expand TB health education in schools
  • Intensify awareness and Directly Observed Treatments (DOTs)  to patients and their families/caregivers on the importance of taking drugs as prescribed and ensure 100% compliance in treatment (drugs) whereby CHWs can support in following up patients to reduce defaulter cases
  • Enhance the capacity of  service  providers/health facilities to ensure early and effective testing with the right equipment to detect TB and drugs to treat all TB cases
  • Increase domestic funding for TB both at the county an national levels

Its Time  for a TB-Free Kenya– ACT Now!

Esther Kagure, KANCO TB Project , posing for a photo during the Global Fund Replenishment and Domestic  Resource Mobilization for Health Workshop hosted by KANCO

In this issue:

  • KANCO hosts Global Fund Replenishment  workshop
  •  Marking the Zero Discrimination Day
  • The TB Burden in Kenya at a Glance

To read more download

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March 21st, 2019

Sammy kihiu, Documentation and Communication

Mr. Sammy Kihiu receiving KANCO’s certificate of appreciation from Ms Tume Abduba, chief officer Nakuru County (Gender, Culture and Social Services).

On the 8th of March 2019,  KANCO  joined the international community  to Mark the International Women’s Day. A day set aside to celebrate and champion for women’s rights. In Nakuru County , a Gender based cluster group that focuses on Gender issues, the Nakuru East and West GBV Cluster which  KANCO is an active member of, held  a  women’s  forum where that saw women share and learn from each other  as well as engage a multi- stakeholder   that featured  the various representatives  from the different county departments. In social was lit with informational materials: blogs, promotional videos etc. under the theme #BalanceforBetter.  all manner of well-deserved celebratory messages were shared in recognition of women as a world without women is unimaginable!

While for centuries women have struggled with political and social cultural challenges that continue to be addressed, what stood out significantly on this day was the issue of gender based violence and the resounding calls to ensure all girls and women are protected. According to the Kenya Domestic Household Survey (KDHS) 2014, 38 percent of women aged 15-49 reported physical violence and 14 percent reported having experienced sexual violence. Further in 2013, the Kenya Police Service received 3,596 defilement cases; 913 of rape; 242 of incest and 124 of sodomy. LVCT Health report 2015 cites 5,143 cases of GBV from 131 sites across the country. Out of these, the most affected are girls aged between 12-17 representing 41 percent of survivors followed by women aged 18-49 who make up 32 percent.

While women have been predominantly the face of gender based violence encompassing, physical, sexual, psychological assaults and sometimes murder, there is need for   special consideration for women who are in the key population groups as they face a heightened risk of exposure to GBV. Careful not take the day away from women, its paramount to note that women cannot be celebrated without talking about men, especially in the African Patriarchal society, as they are central to creating an enabling and conducive environment for women to thrive, but also worth noting is that men too bear a brunt of GBV especially those who  identify as key populations. Consequently gender based violence needs to be addressed holistically   looking at both men and women who are faced by this adversity.

Women who inject and use drugs are particularly vulnerable, over and above the heightened stigma and marginalization, many of them engage in transactional sex to meet their drug use and other needs, and this further predisposes them to violence and blood borne infections.  Even though the challenges of GBV is more compounded among key population groups, the general population is also not spared, with incidences meted on both men and women making headlines.

Womens biological, behavioural, and other structural factors put them at higher risk for HIV transmission further compounded by a  range of policy barriers around drugs and drug use  making access to ham reduction services  difficult  especially for  women who use  drugs. Some of the factors that increase women who use drugs vulnerability include:

  • Stigma, marginalization, and gender roles pose barriers to asking for sterile injection equipment and maintaining safer sex practices.
  • Female PWID are more likely to be initiated into drug use by male partners.
  • Women have increased physical vulnerability to sexual transmission of HIV.
  • Women are more likely to have partners who inject drugs than men.
  • Women are at higher risk of gender-based violence and sexual abuse

“We are all products of women and I want to assure the women that as a county government we are committed towards addressing the challenges they face through empowerment programs. I also call on male gender to ensure they play their role of protecting women rights,” Dr.Kityenya, Nakuru County, International Women Day 2019

Ray Drop in Centre in Rongai is among the many places where KANCO has a direct touch with the community, especially women who use drugs. The centre provides HIV prevention services including:  issuance of both male and female condoms, lubes for men having sex with men (MSMs), screening for STI’s services, prevention with positives (PWPs), and follow- ups to ensure adherence to ART among other services. In the quest for realization of a healthy people and empowered communities, which is the driving mantra for KANCO.

 

Mr. Fredrick Muturi, the regional co-ordinator Ray Drop-in Centre, observes that GBV cases among the Key Populations (KPs) are prevalent recording an average of 2 cases a month among the Key populations cohorts managed  by the Facility. According to UNIFEM report, domestic violence stands out as one of the most prevalent forms of GBV; violence occasioned by male partners in relationships amounts to 70% of reported cases; wife battering occurs regularly in 85% of all cultures. One of the reasons especially amongst the KP’s is the fear of getting HIV from the partners. Fredrick however, noted that, they do the first line response for presented cases (medical support) and do referrals to other partners that KANCO works with.  He also noted that KANCO has a KP’s technical working group that lobbies with the Kajiado County Government for the support and care of the KPs and also through networking with other CSO’s and security forces KANCO is able to refer cases  to the relevant offices for better assistance and support.

Women who use drugs have human rights and rights to health. They should access health services without discrimination be it in Government or private hospitals’- Mr. Fredrick Muturi.

Despite the pressing need for HIV drug treatment, harm reduction, and hepatitis services, a variety of factors restrict WWID’s access to such services including:

  • Societal marginalization, stigma, and stereotyped gender relationships. In many countries, women are less likely to seek services because the label of “drug user” holds greater stigma for women than men.
  • Services designed for men. Harm reduction programs serve mostly men and do not cater for the needs of female drug users.
  • Lack of integrated services. Failure to integrate drug treatment and harm reduction with other health services restricts access to comprehensive care that meets WWID’s health needs.
  • Limited access to legal services. Expanded access to legal services for women who inject drugs could help protect them against abuse from law enforcement and health providers.

We can change the narrative. Yes, you and me by ending the discrimination against women and especially women who use and inject drugs, through taking short but deliberate steps in acknowledging their rights as human beings and their right to health and thereby creating a conducive environment for them to enjoy these rights at all levels.

March 6th, 2019

Joan Mutinda, Policy Advocacy

TB Crisis – The Facts

Tuberculosis (TB) is the world’s top infectious killer  diseases today. According to World Health organization (WHO), TB is the ninth leading cause of death worldwide and the leading cause from a single infectious agent, ranking above HIV/AIDS. Over 25% of TB deaths occur in the African Region. Kenya is one of the 30 high burden countries that together account for more than 80% of the world’s TB cases.  Kenya also faces a triple burden of HIV and TB, while TB remains  the fourth highest cause of death  among infectious diseases.

Key Challenges Facing The Fight Against Today

Multidrug – Resistant TB:

Although Kenya has made great strides in TB control, emergence of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) remains a big challenge in the country and poses a major health security threat and could risk gains made in the fight against TB. The effects are huge. According to the TB patient cost survey, which is in line with the World Health Organization (WHO)  end TB strategy and the Universal Health Coverage (UHC), 62.5% of drug resistant TB (DR-TB) patients lost jobs due to TB. Some of these DR-TB patients have to go through the 6 to 8 months medication regime first before they start the drug resistant regime that runs for 20 months which is very costly. Patients with the DR-TB incur six times higher costs Ksh. 145,109.53 compared to drug sensitive TB (DS-TB) patients Ksh. 25,874.00 (Ministry of health, 2018).  The case of Williamdemonstrates the impact TB is having on ordinary Kenyans and therefore validating the call : Its time to stop TB deaths

William is a TB survivor who had a long journey to be TB-free. William lost his wife from TB after she went through the 6 to 8 month TB treatment re- gime unfortunately she succumbed. After his wife’s death, he started having the same symptoms and he knew right away that he was suffering from TB. He too went through the 6 to 8 month TB treatment regime. William did not get any relief after the 8 months, his health kept deteriorating. He was re- ferred to a county hospital where he was tested with a GeneXpert machine which showed he had DR-TB. This time around he was put on medication for 20 months. The side effects were excruciating. After the 20 months, William fortunately tested negative for TB (Centre of health solutions- Kenya, 2018).

Inadequate testing facilities:

Only few government facilities have the GeneXpert machine and sometimes face shortages of cartridges which forces the health facilities to revert to microscopy testing (Oketch, 2018).  William’s case demonstrates the need to have effective testing facilities in order to detect, initi- ate treatment  and Stop TB Deaths!

Cost and management of TB:

Though TB drugs are free, patients still pay for examinations like X rays and scans. There is also still no clear policy on how to manage TB cas- es for  treatment defaulters. The drugs may be free, but they have to be accompanied by a good diet-vitamin supplement (The standard, 2018). There are more William cases that do not have a happy ending as a huge proportion of people who suffer from TB are from below the poverty line and lack the means to do follow-up screenings and treatment.

Funding:

In spite of the fact that funding has increased through the years, there is still a huge funding gap. Kenya relies on external funding to finance HIV, TB and malaria. An estimated Ksh 77 billion is accounted for by donors which amounts to 92% of the total need estimated at Ksh 84 bil- lion. At the end, the donors invest 1.3 times the total amount of the Ministry of Health budget. This constitutes 3.9% of the total national budg- et for the FY 2017/18.  In 2014/15 financial year, the health allocation rose to 3.8 % from 3.17%, in 2014/15 and 2016/17 it rose to 4.1%. In 2017/18, the allocation fell to 3.9%. Overall, 8% of the budgetary need is not met in HIV and a 26% in TB (Muchangi, 2018).The government needs to add more funding for TB in order to be able to tackle this upcoming new challenges. TB can be fatal, fortunately it is a disease that has a cure.

Ongoing Initiatives

Kenya signed Tuberculosis grants from global fund amounting to Ksh. 6.3 billion for January 2018-June 2021.The funds will support:  Procure- ment of TB medicines ,equipment ,diagnostic supplies and therapeutic feeds; complement government efforts by putting about 338,550 new TB cases on treatment by 2021;provision of medicine to 1,890 drug resistance TB cases until June 2021;short term regimen for treatment of drug resistant TB cases and capacity building of facility/community health workers (National Tuberculosis, Leprosy and lung Disease program, 2019).

It‘s Time To Act- Stop TB Deaths

In addition to the ongoing initiatives above, the following action points could go a long way in stopping TB deaths:

  • Scaling up prevention by addressing the congestion problem at community level and use CHWs to champion the agenda, put in place mechanisms to respond to the risks of the congestion in prisons and expand TB health education in schools
  • Intensify awareness and Directly Observed Treatments (DOTs)  to patients and their families/caregivers on the importance of taking drugs as prescribed and ensure 100% compliance in treatment (drugs) whereby CHWs can support in following up patients to reduce defaulter cases
  • Enhance the capacity of  service  providers/health facilities to ensure early and effective testing with the right equipment to detect TB and drugs to treat all TB cases
  • Increase domestic funding for TB both at the county an national levels

Its Time  for a TB-Free Kenya– ACT Now!

February 22nd, 2019

Joan Mutinda, Policy Advocacy

Globally, cancer causes more deaths than HIV, TB and Malaria combined. 70% of the global Cancer burden is in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs) . In Kenya, cancer is now the 3rd leading cause of deaths and second among non- communicable diseases accounting for 7% of overall mortality rate. The annual incidences are estimated to be 37,000 new cases with annual mortality rate of 28,000 (Ferlay et al 2013).

Facilities in Kenya offering cancer treatment are very few the main being Kenyatta National Hospital(KNH) in the public sector. This  puts lives of thousands of cancer patients in Kenya at risk as they struggle to get treatment using the three functional radiotherapy machines at KNH.  This is evident in Ms. Monica Akinyi’s case a cancer patient in Kisumu, who makes several trips to Nairobi every month for radiotherapy but the long queues are discouraging and distressing. When she first visited the hospital, she waited for five days before a doctor could attend to her. And there after joined a long queue of cancer patients waiting for their turn. In addition to making long trips to hospital, (700 kms return) she is charged Ksh3,600 per session and needs 25 to 30 sessions per month which translates to 90,000 per month (Oketch,2018). Ms. Akinyi unfortunately represents thousands of Kenyans who must travel from different parts of the country for radiotherapy services at KNH despite the government making an effort to decongest the hospital by leasing cancer machines to counties. This makes cancer treatment very costly and implies that over 90% of kenyans cannot afford cancer services even in the public hospitals. This explains the unacceptable high annual mortality rate of 28,000.

Although cancer is curable, unfortunately  70-80% of patients diagnosed with cancer in Kenya are at advanced stages with high incidence of  misdiagnosis and inadequate screening hindering early detection. Case in point which represents the fate of many Kenyans  is journalist  Dennis Omondi who had a flu that wouldn’t just go away. After visiting several hospitals his boss referred him to a renowned hematologist at KNH. He was diagnosed with leukemia stage 4 and sadly succumbed to his illness within seven months.(Graham,2018). An- other example is honorable Kenneth Odhiambo Kibra MP who was recently diagnosed with stage four colorectal cancer. His diagnosis was not easy to come by. For over a year he was put on drugs to manage stress. By the time his doctor ordered for advanced scan, he was found at stage 4 cancer. MP Odhiambo alluded cancer treatment is not easy in the country. (Graham, 2019). This represents the reality in Kenya where majority are not accessing screening services or cancer is detected very late. The  Cancer Prevention and Control Act 2012 and the National Cancer control Strategy (NCCS) 2017-2022 highly prioritizes prevention, screening and early detection. Efforts to promote early presentation and faster referrals, diagnosis, and treatment need urgent intervention in all levels.

In view of the above cancer crisis in our country, it is now urgent that the NCCS 2017-2022 is rolled out, we recommend: With the cancer treatment now included in NHIF, sensitization for Kenyans to join NHIF in line with UHC; establish health promotion and prevention programs for cancer screening at level 1, 2 and 3 facilities, use community health workers in line with the community health strategy to promote cancer prevention programs and counties to operationalize cancer services (functional) at level 4 or 5 facilities.

 

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