Country: The Republic of Kenya, commonly called Kenya, is located in the African Great Lakes area of East Africa. Kenya offers beautiful natural features including grasslands, mountains, deserts, beaches, and coral reefs. Kenya is situated on the equator and is bordered by Uganda to the west, South Sudan on the northwest, Somalia on the northeast, Tanzania on the south, Ethiopia on the north, and the Indian Ocean on the southeast.
The country’s population is 44 million and its capital is Nairobi. English and Swahili are the official languages.
To access emergency services: Dial 999
Currency: Kenyan shilling (KES)
Recommended immunizations and vaccines for travelers: Before traveling to Kenya, ask your doctor what vaccines are recommended. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) are excellent resources as well.
Insurance: Find out in advance if your insurance plan will make payments directly to providers or reimburse you later for overseas health expenditures.
It is also worth ensuring your travel insurance will cover ambulances or transport either home or to more advanced medical facilities, if needed. Not all insurance covers emergency medical evacuation home or to a hospital in a major city, which may be the only way to receive medical attention in a serious emergency.
Source: International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers.
What to expect in a Kenyan hospital: In Nairobi, one can find excellent hospitals and health care, while in other parts of the country adequate care may be difficult to locate. In rural areas, medication, IV fluids, and even sterile dressings may need to be supplied by the patient through a pharmacy.
There are basically three types of hospitals available in Kenya, offering varying levels of service and cost. Public hospitals are the least expensive and are often equipped with older equipment and limited medication. Payment will be expected in cash at the time of treatment. Mission hospitals offer adequate facilities and donations serve as payment. Private hospitals, though expensive, offer state-of-the-art equipment and a highly trained staff. Payment will be expected in cash at the time of treatment. With English as an official language, medical personnel will speak English.
Contact your embassy/consulate: When in doubt, your country’s embassy is a good resource to turn to for medical assistance guidance.
JCI-accredited hospitals/clinics in Kenya: To read about specific facilities which are JCI-accredited, visit the Hospital Search section.
Kenya-specific helpful health resources:
Travel health notices: Visit the CDC or WHO for up-to-date travel notices.