Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Karen Hospital Opens Near Nairobi

Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki was the featured speaker on Friday at the official opening of the Karen Hospital, described by the East African Standard newspaper as "a 102-bed private medical facility linked to his personal doctor Dr Dan Gikonyo." The Kenya Broadcasting Corporation reported that "other speakers included Health Minister Charity Ngilu who thanked President Kibaki for increasing her ministry's budget by 30 percent, the hospital's Chief Executive Dr. Betty Gikonyo and Deputy Chief Executive Mr. James Mageria."

Dr. Daniel Gikonyo, mentioned in the Standard's story, is a U.S.-educated (University of Minnesota) cardiologist who teaches at the University of Nairobi. Although he would be loathe to take credit, he was the guiding hand behind the Karen Hospital, the first new hospital built in Kenya since the colonial era. (Kenya gained independence from Britain on December 12, 1963.)

If you've seen the movie, Out of Africa, you know where Karen is -- it's the Nairobi suburb where Danish writer Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen) lived and worked.

I had an opportunity to take a private tour of the Karen Hospital when I was in Nairobi in January, and I snapped a few pictures. This was the first time I ever had visited a hospital before it was open. Beds were still covered in plastic wrap and there was a pervasive aroma of fresh paint throughout the facility.

But nothing describes the Karen Hospital more than "impressive." It has state-of-the-art equipment, including MRI and CT-scan machines. It is especially well-equipped for treating diseases of the heart.

Here are a few of the photos I took while the hospital staff was preparing it for opening in January:

Main Entrance to The Karen Hospital

The Karen Hospital's Emergency Room Entrance

A CT-Scan Unit at the Karen Hospital near Nairobi

The Karen Hospital Has No Stairs, Just Ramps -- But It Has Plenty of Natural Light

A New Hospital Bed, Still Wrapped in Plastic

I'm Not a Doctor, So I Don't Know What This Is -- But It Looks Impressive, Doesn't It?

This Is a Nurses' Station

A Private Patient's Room

Another View of the Karen Hospital's Front Entrance


Anonymous said...

Iam very impressed with all the architectural work that was done on the whole structure.As an architecture student it was a very nice experience.
Am very grateful to Mr.Stanely Kebathi of SK Archplans,who allowed to be attached in his firm during the time of construction of this Marvellous Hospital.
I really enjoyed doing the various details.]
Conratulations Dr Gikonyo and the whole team that you worked with.May God bless the work of your hands as you save more lives.

Anonymous said...

Dr Gikonyo is a great doctor.Am a kenyan trained nurse working in US for over 10 years.When my mother got sick and I sent my mother back to Dr Gikonyo for treatment my US colleagues could not believe we have great doctors ,nurses and hospitals as they still look down on foreign trained nurses.Bravo to Dr. Gikonyo who I worked with for many years for being such a dedicated Doctor.

Anonymous said...

hi am denis from kenya,this is a chance for us here to get high class medical care at home.Dr Gikonyo has done a great thing for the society.i just hope that it's affordable.am on complit@inbox.com

Anonymous said...


Dr. Gikonyo has been my doctor for many years and every time I visit his clinic is like a breath of fresh air. He is friendly, kind and generous. Although I have been in hospital many times, I am still scared of even the most harmless medical instruments yet he understands me with unbelievable humility. I am so happy that his dream has finally true. Dr. Dan Gikonyo you deserve Karen hospital and much more. Way to go Doc. You give grace and honor to the medical profession.

Anonymous said...

Nice pics and stories on Karen Hospital. It's just a few miles from where I live.

Anonymous said...

he did some observership in th US but did not train cardiology here . sorry to say just stating the obvious

ruth kamau said...

i've just viewed the karen hospital photos and they are very impressive,the architecture especially.

Anonymous said...

the sixth picture thats an X-RAY machine mmm i like the hospital its state of the art they even have hillrom beds that good

Anonymous said...

I have no words to describe Dr Gikonyo. Hi is so down to earth and so humble he just passes as any ordinary person and when you remember he the president's physician you actually tremble but he reassures you. What amazes me is dedication to his job. His money can work for him yet he seems to work 16hrs in a day helping poor souls. He shakes hands with everyone. God bless him and his great team at Karen heart clinic. Dagitari you are just wonderful and such a blessing to Kenya!