The training, which will equip nurses who make up 30 percent of KMTC’s population of 12,000 with better English skills, will make them internationally competitive.
” It is the first time the government is doing this just to prepare our workers to be internationally able and prepared and recognized,” CS Kagwe said.
The Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC) has begun offering English training to nurses in order to meet the terms of a recently signed bilateral agreement between Kenya and the United Kingdom.
The training will improve the English skills of nurses who make up 30% of KMTC’s 12,000-strong population, making them more internationally competitive.
“This marks a great milestone between Kenyan gvt and the UK. The launch of this center is critical in making our nurses competitive internationally, ” Nursing board of Kenya chairperson Dr Eunice Ndirangu said on Tuesday.
“We urge nurses as they go abroad to fly the flag high and continue improving on professionalism.”
The training, which is the first of its kind in Kenya, according to Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, is a game changer that will produce a workforce that is prepared and internationally recognized.
Am happy to officiate this historic event. It is the first time the government is doing this just to prepare our workers to be internationally able and prepared and recognized,” CS Kagwe said.
“We are not saying there are no nurses in the UK from Kenya but we are formalizing the process… Kenyans will travel as expatriates not as refugees.”
Other countries, such as Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, have already made requests for Kenyan health workers, according to the CS, but Kenya will only send those who have not yet been absorbed into the local labor market.
“We are not sending them to the UK at the expense of our country… we are hiring nurses and health workers according to our ability,” the CS said.
“Our colleges are producing young, able nurses. ..we are trying to create an opportunity for those extra,” he added.
Kenya also hopes to import health workers from the UK, although the Health Ministry boss did not reveal when, or the exact number of employees that the country would receive.
“We are looking forward to importing workers, I don’t know when but it can happen,” stated Kagwe.
Kenyan nurses will have access to opportunities in the UK health sector, according to Deputy British High Commissioner Josephine Gould, and the training will also help the country achieve the Universal Health Care Goals.
“Kenya and the UK program will enable Kenya to achieve the UHC goals. The UK high commission in Nairobi is ready to work with the ministry of health to make this program smooth,” Ms Josephine Gould said during the launch.
“It will allow Kenyan nurses access opportunities in the UK. It is also about increasing the quality of nursing in Kenyan market,” she added.
She stated that the program is currently in progress and will take six weeks to complete.
The ministry of health and the UK government signed a Memorandum of Understanding in July 2021 that will see Kenya’s health workforce recruited to UK hospitals.
Under the agreement, Kenyan health workers will be absorbed into the National Health Service, the publicly funded British healthcare system.
The supervised enrollment process will also make it difficult for uncontrolled recruitment to take place in the country.
The Ministry also revealed joint plans between Kenya and the UK to set up a hub at KMTC to be used by Kenyan nurses when preparing for admission exams.
During the first phase of Kenyan nurses’ deployment to the UK, the Ministry of Health said only 10 passed the language proficiency tests required.
“Out of 300 health workers sent for an English language test only 10 passed. We had negotiated for clinical workers for job exports but this turn of events is unfortunate,” CS Kagwe said in October