Pumwani Maternity Hospital in Kenya Imprisons and Beats New Mothers Who Can’t Pay Bills

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Pumwani Maternity Hospital in Kenya Imprisons and Beats New Mothers Who Can’t Pay Bills (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SHOCK:   Lazarus Omondi, the director of the Pumwani Maternity Hospital in downtown Nairobi, Kenya, admits he detains mothers who can’t pay their bills. He said that’s the only way he can keep his medical center running. Um, really?

Two mothers who live in a mud-wall and tin-roof slum near the maternity hospital said Pumwani wouldn’t let them leave after delivering their babies. The bills the mothers couldn’t afford were $60 and $160. Guards with sticks would beat mothers who tried to leave without paying, one of the women said. Omondi says one solution to the problem would be a national health insurance program. Source

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Janet Shan is a freelance journalist and managing editor of the Hinterland Gazette, who is working on her first novel, a mystery based in the hills on Montego Bay.