COUNTY PROVIDES PROTECTIVE GEAR

More Taita Taveta health workers trained to tackle Covid-19

Drawn from county facilities and trained in the management of suspected cases.

In Summary

• The move followed complaints by the workers that they had not been given proper training in how to tackle cases.

• Health executive Mwakima said the county government was committed to protecting the welfare and safety of the health workers.

More than 150 health workers have been trained in Taita Taveta by the Disease Surveillance and Response Unit to respond promptly to Covid-19 cases.

The workers were drawn from facilities across the county and were trained in the management of suspected coronavirus cases on Monday.

Health Services executive John Mwakima said the department has been conducting regular training of healthcare workers and non-medical staff as a key measure for preventing the spread of the virus in health facilities.

Mwakima said despite the prevailing resource challenges, the county has put in place measures to ensure the safety of health workers through capacity building and provision of personal protective equipment to all its frontline teams.

"The county government is committed to supporting the health workers in the fight against Covid-19 and has sought to address some of its current resource gaps through its second supplementary budget, which is before the county assembly," Mwakima said during the training session on KMTC campus in Voi.

The county will enhance one-on-one sensitisation and alert systems at the grassroots by strengthening the capacity of community health volunteers (CHVs).

The move followed complaints by the workers that they had not been given proper training in how to tackle cases.

Last week, county health workers threatened to keep off cases of suspected Covid-19 patients over insufficient personal protective equipment. They decried a lack of isolation centres and standard protection gear, a situation they said left them vulnerable to contagion.

"This centre is a highly infectious place and unless it is made up to standards, it will be a place of infection. The county should have put all its resources into putting up one standard isolation centre, rather than trying to put up in each subcounty, yet it has limited resources," read a letter signed by the health workers' unions.

The protest letter was signed by the Kenya National Union of Nurses, the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmaceuticals and Dentists Union, the Kenya Health Professionals Society, the Kenya National Union of Medical Laboratory Officers and the Kenya National Union of Clinical Officers.

They said staff assigned to work in the isolation centres had not been trained on the standard operating procedures. But CEC Mwakima disputed the claims, noting that the department had invested in training them.

Mwakima said the county government was committed to protecting the welfare and safety of the health workers.

 

(Edited by F'Orieny)