DISEASE PREPAREDNESS

North Rift trains 500 medics, prepares 200 beds for coronavirus

Matatus to keep passenger records; boda bodas restricted

In Summary

• Extra security and health officers have been deployed at the Eldoret International Airport to screen travellers and enforce measures to control spread of the coronavirus,

• Health workers in some counties, however, said they had not been supplied with all the necessary protective gear.

Uasin Gishu Senator Margaret Kamar speaking in Eldoret on preparedness to handle the Corona Virus. She is with members of the Uasin Gishu County response committee
CORONA Uasin Gishu Senator Margaret Kamar speaking in Eldoret on preparedness to handle the Corona Virus. She is with members of the Uasin Gishu County response committee
Image: BY MATHEWS NDANYI

North Rift counties have more than 200 isolation beds in various hospitals to care for Covid-19 patients. 

The counties of Nandi, Uasin Gishu, Trans Nzoia, Elgeyo Marakwet, West Pokot and Turkana have also trained and deployed more than 500 medical staff for the isolation units. 

Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital in Eldoret and the Uasin Gishu County Hospital have set aside facilities with more than 50 beds and trained more than 100 medics.

 
 

On Wednesday, MTRH Chief Executive Officer Dr Wilson Aruasa said they were also training other stakeholders, including the media, on causes, prevention and treatment of the disease. 

“We want to empower the media and other sectors to understand and disseminate the correct information on the coronavirus," Aruasa said.

Health workers in some counties, however, said they had not been supplied with all the necessary protective gear.

Counties also require matatu operators to keep full records of travellers while boda boda operators have been banned from free operations in Eldoret, Kapsabet and Iten towns.

The boda operators will not carry more than one passenger.

Nandi Governor Stephen Sang announced visits to the county headquarters would be suspended for one month. Nandi has a 25-bed isolation ward.

Elgeyo Marakwet Governor Alex Tolgos said county operations would continue with a skeleton staff.

 
 

He announced a shutdown of training camps for local and foreign athletes.

Entertainment venues were closed.  

Extra security and health officers have been deployed at Eldoret International Airport.

Uasin Gishu county commissioner Abdirisack Jaldesa said domestic as well as foreign travellers would be screened.

Uasin Gishu Senator Margaret Kamar said the government had acted wisely and with speed.

She said the ban on big funerals and weddings were a new experience but had to be accepted because of the disease risk.

Court operations in Eldoret, Kitale, Kapsabet and Iten remained disrupted as most employees kept off work for the second day.

Most magistrates handled a few cases in their chambers avoiding open court as directed by Chief Justice David Maraga. 

Inmates who were to appear in court were not presented. Uasin Gishu police boss Johnstone Ipara said police were able to handle many minor cases without taking suspects to court.

The Kenya National Chamber of Commerce of Industry said it fully supports measures taken by the government despite negative effects on the business sector.

Chairman of the chamber in North Rift Willy Kenei says the private sector has to partner with the state in enforcing virus-control measures.

(Edited by V. Graham)