December as everyone knows is a festive time of the year, rushed holiday shopping, goat eating plans, holiday at the Coast maybe….in short it is a happy time and people are more relaxed and carefree, but that is not the case for everyone, especially those in the hospital. Being in hospital in December can be one of the most trying times for a patient because even if they are visited frequently they cannot engage in the festivities. Patient solidarity day was began as a need to show the patients that people out there care about them and have them in mind whether they know them or not and also to promote patient centred health care. On December 10th 2011 Mrs Alice Mwongera the CEO of Morris Moses Foundation decided to honour the patients of Kenyatta National Hospital and Thika Level 5 hospital by visiting them and giving them words of encouragement, paying the bills for a few patients who were unable to clear their own bill, and thus came the birth of Patient Solidarity day. By 2013 this noble cause has caught on and is celebrated in 10 African countries.
Patient solidarity day is usually celebrated on the 2nd Saturday of December, this time though we shall celebrate it on the 1st Saturday which is 7th December so that it can coincide with the 50th year celebration of our country which falls on the 12th of December, which happens to be on a Thursday, just four days later. The theme this year is PSD-K:Kenya @ 50 advocating for patient centered health care. This year we intend to visit Pumwani Maternity Hospital, Kenyatta National Hospital, Mbagathi Hospital, Thika Level 4 and Machakos Level 4. We are beginning an initiative dubbed “Adopt a patient”, this is where we get individuals to purchase an NHIF card for someone in hospital and have it activated that same day and they can use it as medical cover this will assist with the payment of bills. We will also be distributing medical resources to the different hospitals that we will be visiting. As the theme suggests we will be giving different pointers at the hospital on how to practice patient centered health care and encourage the staff at the hospital to practice it.
We are so excited to be celebrating Patient Solidarity Day for the third time and we are working hard to ensure that it takes place and we are able to visit all the hospitals intended and make the day a success for the patients at the hospitals. This is an event worth participating in because you will get to change a person’s life be it directly or indirectly.