West Pokot allocates fund to tackle population growth

Tuesday June 6 2017

A pharmacist displays birth control pills. West

A pharmacist displays birth control pills. West Pokot has allocated Sh10.2 million for family planning services. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By OSCAR KAKAI
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West Pokot is grappling with a high fertility rate.

The county has the second-highest fertility rate in the country, at 7.2 per cent. This, experts say, is due to cultural practices and lack of education.

The county government recently allocated Sh 10.2 million for family planning services to residents this financial year.

The money was allocated to delivery services, advocacy and community mobilisation and other family planning programmes.

Quoting the Kenya Health Demographic Health Survey of 2014, population and development regional coordinator Moses Ouma said one in every 10 women in West Pokot uses modern contraceptives.

TEEN PREGNANCY

Mr Ouma said family planning funds are vital in helping the high teenage pregnancy rates in the county. He said three out of 10 teenage girls have either had their first child or are pregnant with their first child. 

He urged the county government to put at the top of its priorities money for family planning and reproductive health to help residents embrace child spacing so they can manage their families properly.

Consolata Siree, a health worker, said the county ranks high in rates of malnutrition.

“About 60 per cent of people in West Pokot are living on Sh100 a day ,” Mr Ouma said.