The health projects consist of the hospital, the HIV/Aids clinic (VCT) and the orthopedic workshop. 

In 1996 a small clinic was set up by Dr. Bea Andersen – Schipper, Director of Mount Elgon Orchards. For 10 years the clinic was operating from a residential house on the farm. During this period the main external donor was the Foundation SOK from the Netherlands. With the help of the DEG (the German Development Bank) Mount Elgon Orchards was able to build a new health facility in 2007. The new facility is well equipped and fulfills a regional function. Since that moment the name of the hospital became Andersen Medical Centre.  In 2010 the hospital has been accredited by the National Hospital Insurance Fund. The hospital offers the following services:

  • Outpatient care
  • Inpatient care
  • Maternity services
  • Treatment room for minor surgery
  • Laboratory
  • Dental services
  • Family planning
  • Programs for Malaria, TB, EPI and STI
  • Pharmacy
  • Antenatal services
  • Ultrasound
  • Physiotherapy
  • Child care clinic
  • X-ray room
  • Ambulance service
  • Mortuary

People come from far to visit the hospital, it is normal to walk for one or two hours to reach there. Some people come from Kitale, 40 kilometers away, because they have heard Andersen Medical Centre is a very good hospital. Dr. Bea Andersen – Schipper tells us why it is such a good hospital:

  1. There are always enough staff and medication available through good management.
  2. People who visit the hospital get a service which is affordable thanks to Foundation SOK and Mount Elgon Orchards.
  3. The most important factor is that we have employees who are very involved and motivated to help the patients.
  4. When there are emergencies we will always help the patient until we are out of options. So if there is a life-saving operation necessary, then we will ensure that it takes place rather than just a referral and hope that it will be okay. 
  5. The staff are well qualified and so the quality of the care is good and the results are good too.

If we cannot solve the medical problems in our clinic we will send the patients to other hospitals. In Kitale there is a number of specialists, such as a pediatrician, internist, surgeon, gynecologist, otolaryngologist and an ophthalmologist. If we need other specialists, the patient will go to Eldoret (100km) where there is the neurologist, orthopedist, neurosurgeon and cardiologist. 


Some figures for Andersen Medical Centre:

  • Employs 35 staff
  • Has 16 beds
  • Has more than 35.000 people who visit the hospital every year
  • Has more than 1.900 patients who are admitted every year

The VCT building

A local woman who is getting knowledge about HIV

Some figures, at the moment for the HIV/Aids Centre:

  • Have some 1000 people are on treatment
  • Over 4000 people a year are tested with our mobile VCT
  • Now 5-6% of the population is infected with HIV (down from 11% when we began)
  • The age from people who are HIV positive ranges from 24 to 59 years

HIV/Aids clinic
Andersen VCT has its own building and staff, but is officially a part of Andersen Medical Centre. Mount Elgon Orchards is located close to the epicentre of the start of the Aids epidemic. From the screening of blood donors during the periode from 2000 till 2005 it became clear that about 11% of the population was infected with HIV.

Since 1998 the farm has made an effort to try and develop more awareness among the people and thus reduce the stigma. This proved very difficult until in 2005 when the anti-retroviral drugs became available at much lower cost. Suddenly the hope for treatment outweighed the fear of stigma and people starting coming forward. At that time we launched the Voluntary Counseling and Testing Centre (VCT). The VCT does the following things:

  • Voluntary counseling and testing
  • Treatment of HIV patients
  • Laboratory with CD4 testing (blood immunity)
  • Nutritional program with kitchen gardens support to self-help groups
  • Training and awareness seminars
  • TB clinic
  • STI clinic
  • Healthy living clinic
  • PMTCT clinic for pregnant women
  • Running a mobile VCT in the villages and at schools for testing

The VCT is networking with all stakeholders involved: NGO’s, Ministry of Health, people living with HIV, community leaders and Ministry of Education. The Ministry of Health is providing the following supplies: ARV drugs, TB drugs, STI drugs, test kits, mosquito nets and condoms. 

Orthopedic Workshop
In Kitale town the Trust had established an orthopedic workshop where Stephen Sweta, the orthopedic technician, made appliances for disabled people. The clients often have disabilities like artificial limps, polio boots, braces, crutches etc. The orthopedic technician have an outreach program to find new cases of disabled people in the villages. He links up with other organizations and offers his services. It is the only functioning project of its kind in the Northern Rift Valley province. The workshop also selects people who are eligible for operations at the Kijabe Hospital near Nairobi and Nyabondo Hospital near Kisumu. The Trust will assist with operation costs. A new Orthopedic Workshop was been built next to Andersen Medical Centre in 2013. It is now more efficient for Stephen to serve the patients from within.