Four nursing sisters belonging to the Irish Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy (Teresita Conneally, Maria Goretti Cunniffe, Paschal Gibbons and Mary Mc. Dermott) arrived in Nairobi on 10th December 1962 and in Mutomo on 12th December 1962 with their Superior General. This was subsequent to an invitation by the then Prefect Apostolic of Kitui Catholic Diocese Monsignor William Dunne to the Sisters of Mercy to establish health care services for the people of Mutomo.
With the support of Miserior Germany, the Diocese gradually started the hospital buildings. The hospital was officially opened in 1964, and the first doctor, Dr. Joe Myers, was recruited from Belgium.
Very gradually, the hospital was expanded and staff housing was added. In 1970, a midwifery school was opened, and in the 20 years of its existence, over 300 girls were trained as midwives. A severe famine in the mid 70’s led to the commencement of a feeding program by USAID. High mortality of children in the 60’s and 70’s was attributed to the pandemics of measles and polio. A concerted effort was made to treat leprosy until eventually leprosy was eradicated. All the while, malnutrition was common especially in times of food shortage. The hospital with the help of Catholic Relief Services (CRS) assisted many needy families in this regard. The emergence of HIV/AIDS in the 80’s was a formidable challenge. In 2004, the US government funded the PEPFAR program for patients suffering from HIV/AIDS. Mutomo hospital has been at the forefront of making the treatment a reality.
Since 1997, the hospital enjoys the support from the Swedish/Scandinavian doctor’s bank which ensures that the dental services are continued throughout the year and that the general health care services receive the support of either a general practitioner or a surgeon. Other partners that have supported the hospital in providing services include: Africa Medical Research Foundation (AMREF); Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) – Health Commission; Catholic Medical Mission Board (CMMB); Christian Health Association of Kenya (CHAK), Mission for Essential Drugs and Supplies (MEDS), National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) and the Ministry of Health.
Today Mutomo hospital has a bed capacity of 124 with a workforce of about 130