• The ward representatives ignored the suspension of their sittings and toured the clinics and dispensaries to find how prepared they are to handle coronavirus.
• However, they commended the county government for ensuring that level four hospitals had isolation wards.
Embu clinics and dispensaries are unprepared to handle coronavirus, according to the County Liaison Committee whose members toured the facilities on Tuesday and Wednesday.
However, the committee, comprising 20 chairmen of other committees, commended the county government for ensuring that level four hospitals had isolation wards in case of the virus outbreak.
The committee was checking the preparedness of the health facilities, having ignored County Assembly forum chairman Ndegwa Muhoro who had earlier suspended the sittings indefinitely to avoid spreading coronavirus.
The ward reps, led by Deputy Speaker Steve Munene, split into four groups, each covering a sub-county. They are expected to submit a report on the way forward today.
Mavuria Ward representative John Mbaka said the capacity of the health workers was wanting. Most of the facilities are understaffed and poorly equipped. All they can do is isolate a suspect and call for help from specialists.
“We were disappointed that our health facilities are understaffed. Some dispensaries are manned by only two people. Most of them rely on interns who are overburdened,” Mbaka said.
The county has Sh1.6 billion out of its Sh6.6 billion budget on health services. The reps were also trying to establish whether the money was being well spent.
Mbaka said there is a dire need to recruit more health workers for the public to be better served.
He said the hospitals had adequate hand sanitisers, water and soap for patients and the public.
Kenya had by Wednesday seven confirmed coronavirus cases. The disease, which was first reported in China last December, has killed more than 8,800 people worldwide.
Close to 220,000 people have contracted the disease.