Kenya will end a six-year agreement that allowed more than 100 Cuban doctors to work in Kenyan hospitals.
Health Minister Susan Nakhumicha said on Wednesday that the move will help address challenges faced by Kenyan health workers, including the lack of employment opportunities.
“We have decided not to renew the agreement with the Cuban doctors. Our very own healthcare professionals are committed to the cause,” she said.
A 2017 deal established an exchange programe in which Cuban doctors would help fill the gap in county hospitals while Kenyans would travel to Cuba for specialized medical training.
It was unpopular with Kenyan medical professionals, who argued that local doctors had the requisite training just as their Cuban counterparts did.
There were also concerns that the Kenyan government was paying the Cuban professionals much more than their Kenyan counterparts – even as some locally trained doctors remained unemployed.
Doctors and other health workers in Kenya have often gone on strike to demand higher wages, better working conditions and for more doctors to be hired.