Maseno University

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Maseno University to spearhead research on maternal health programs in Kenya

Deputy Vice- Chancellor, Partnership, Research and Innovations Prof. Joseph Chacha giving opening remarks at the SPIKE workshop in Kisumu hotel.

Maseno University will spearhead a research on Inclusive Growth through Social Protection in Maternal Health Programs in Kenya (SPIKE).
A preparatory workshop for the research which will provide an appropriate platform for Maseno University and partners to lay the foundation for research in maternal health care in Kenya was held at the Kisumu Hotel on 1st and 2nd September 2015.

The research will be done in Kisumu, Kwale, Kilifi, Siaya and Kisii counties in partnership with the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Associated Institute of the University of Basel, the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research, Universitat Bern and the Government of Kenya.

Maseno University’s Acting Vice-Chancellor Prof. Joseph Chacha speaking during the official opening of the workshop said that the University policy encourages partnerships that lead to collaborative research for purposes of influencing policy and practice. 

“A significant portion of research within the University has aimed at generating new evidence that can enhance the existing social protection that the Kenyan Government is currently implementing within the various government departments,” he explained.

Adding that such studies conducted in the recent past by Maseno University scholars include; researches that can influence the implementation of cash transfers in the country, researches on the implementation of Output-Based-Aid approaches to the provision of health services to Kenyans of low-income cadre such as the scaling up of Performance-Based Financing (PBF) of which existing evidence shows that it has improved access and quality of health services for Kenyans living in Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL) in Kenya.

Dr. Sonja Merten of Swizz Tropical and Public Health Institute addressing the participants during the SPIKE workshop in Kisumu hotel.

Ministry of Health’s Dr. Ruth Kitetu explained that the government will continue to review its policies to give room to new research and challenged public universities in the lakeside region to venture in research because such findings are critical in improving quality of lives in the region.

“Whenever results are out, we look at the policy direction and if there is need to review them based on the findings we take action,” she noted.

The government initiated the free maternity services in all public health facilities in Kenya in its efforts to increase skilled deliveries as a mechanism to protect expectant mothers from low socio-economic settings from the health hazards associated with home or unskilled deliveries associated with neonatal and post-partum complications that put at risk the health of the mother and new born babies.

It is important to note that the Kenyan free maternity health policy exists alongside the donor driven maternal voucher system in selected counties within the country.


Maseno University to spearhead research on maternal health programs in Kenya