The war between Clinical Officers and Medical Officers took a new twist after the Doctors Union ,KMPDU led by their Secretary General Dr Ouma Oluga threatened to go to court after the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) gave Clinical Officers the nod to order tests and perform operations as per their scope of study
This according to NHIF is in line with the Health Act and the clinical officers act cap 260
KMPDU claims the law does not permit the Clinical officers to perform such functions .Speaking on a live National TV ,Dr Oluga was quoted saying its illegal and misleading to allow the clinical officers to perform Minor Surgeries and order tests .
He threatened to go to court ,an act that Kenya Union of Clinical Officers General Secretary George Gibore termed as malicious and unlawful.
“We will meet in court ,the law is very clear .The Health Act allows us to perform surgeries and order for tests as per our scope of study ,let them go to court and we meet there ” Gibore said
Also adding his voice to the ongoing debate was Kisumu Branch Chairman of the Kenya Union of Clinical Officers ,Mr Vincent Owaa who termed the act as fight for Money at the National Health Insurance Coffers .
In his statement Owaa says the aggressive war by MOs against COs has nothing to do with Competency or surgeries ,but it has all to do with NHIF and Money.
He further says that until last week pre authorization for surgeries was only done by the doctors , meaning all procedures performed however small/minor it is , would only be paid for if done by a Medical Officer or a consultant,
To Owaa ,this way only the two were directly benefiting from the NHIF ,
“Last week we did a surgery with a surgeon, orthopedic, It was a minor surgery but NHIF was paying 120k for the procedure , I did the entire K .Wiring alone ,but since I have no KMPDB number the Medical Officer had to sign for me to get paid by the hospitals” Owaa was quoted
He concluded ” that this war is about money ,monopoly of NHIF rebets by doctors only for procedures is threatened, they want to continue enjoying it by force ,The plan is to set clinicians against Kenyans so that the government can rescind its decision on NHIF.”
The health sector does not belong to one cadre ,clinical officers can’t be doing procedures for free while doctors carry money all the way to the bank,
An ENT clinicians must be paid for removing coin from the nose or ear of a patient the same way the ENT surgeon is paid for his surgeries ,though with different limits ,
An Orthopedic CO must be paid for applying and Ecofix in a compound fracture the same way a surgeon is paid for doing hip or knee replacement, a BSC co and reproductive co must be paid for doing Caeserain Sections the same way a Gynaecologist is paid for the same case.
His parting shot “Pay an ordinary Diploma Co for I& D the same way you pay when its done by an M.O.”