A number of retired athletes from Nandi County received medical checkup from Rapha Total Care Clinics based in Eldoret, in partnership with Deliverance church at no cost.
The medical camp which was stationed at Kabirsang village in Nandi County was aimed at improving the quality of life of former athletes.
Speaking during the exercise, Director of Rapha Total Clinics Bishop David Momanyi Gichana said the purpose of the program is to provide former athletes with a comprehensive evaluation of their mental and physical functioning.
Bishop Gichana noted that majority of Kenyan athletes especially track and long distance runners had brought the country glory calling for support from the national and county governments.
“Our athletes have made Kenya proud, I am appealing to the national government to support them financially when they retire since it’s the best way to honor them,” he said.
Among veterans who turned up for the medical checkups are former long-distance runner Philip Barkuto, 2001 World Championship Silver medalist Simon Biwott and Kipchoge Hezekiah Keino.
Simon Biwott who is also the Kenyan Veteran Athletes Association Secretary said they reached out and assembled the veterans for the exercise.
‘’We have lost many of our retired athletes because they don’t have insurance cover while others have died from treatable diseases. We thank the Rapha team for coming to our rescue,” he noted.
Biwott further said that the medical bills have been high, forcing them to sell their personal properties to cater for the expenses, leaving them in poverty.
Keino stated that hundreds of professional athletes retire each year but unfortunately many of the spend retirement in physical and mental pain adding that they should be accorded better health care.
“Rapha health facility has been of great help to our veterans especially those that can’t travel long distance. The government should emulate the same and ensure the athletes get free proper medical care,” he said
Story by Linet Wafula KNA Kapsabet