Phanice Kwamboka, Kenya
Phanice is a mother and market-trader from Barani in Mombasa county, who lives with Type 2 diabetes.
Phanice, is a mother of four children from Barani village, Mombasa County, Kenya. In 2014, she was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. But without access to local medical help, she has struggled to control her condition:
“Getting medication for diabetes is not easy because of the high cost of buying them. And even the distance to the hospital where I can get the medicine is very far. And I don’t have enough fare to go to the hospital. Even getting 200 shillings (approx.£1.30) to go there, I cannot afford it.”
During COVID lockdowns, screening and treatment services stopped, meaning people with long-term chronic conditions have had to go without care.
And without medicine, she became tired and weak which meant she couldn’t work. She often had to choose between buying food for her family, or medicine to help protect herself from serious risk of diabetes complications including heart disease, stroke and even blindness.
Vital healthcare from mobile clinics
Amref introduced mobile clinics, in partnership with the Kenyan Ministry of Health, to support the delivery of Kenya’s national COVID-19 vaccination programme. The clinics provided vaccinations to communities where the nearest health facility was hours - or even days - away.
Now, they could be the frontline for tackling another major health challenge in Kenya: the rise of chronic health conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, and cancer.
When one of the clinics visited Phanice’s community, she got advice from trained health workers and a COVID-19 vaccine. This free, easy access to medical support means she has the strength to work and take care of her family.