• The ICU ward launch comes a week after the laboratory at the same hospital was awarded ISO certification after meeting conditions for quality services.
• The county has also put into use 12 new ambulances as part of its healthcare preparedness.
Nandi county has completed a seven-bed ICU ward at the Kapsabet County Referral Hospital at a cost of more than Sh40 million.
Nandi Governor Stephen Sang said the unit will serve residents and those living in areas between Eldoret and Kisumu.
“Completing the ICU ward is our latest move in efforts by the county to ensure we turn the hospital into a modern facility that can handle any health condition and offer world-class services,” Sang said.
The Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital in Eldoret is the only other facility in the region with ICU wards.
The ICU ward launch comes a week after the laboratory at the same hospital was awarded ISO certification after meeting conditions for quality services.
The county has also put into use 12 new ambulances as part of its healthcare preparedness.
The county will have more ICU facilities once the ongoing construction of the Sh430 million mother and child unit is completed at the county referral hospital.
Meanwhile, the eight counties in the North Rift are rushing to set up 2,400-bed isolation units for Covid-19 patients as infection numbers surge. Uasin Gishu leads in the region with more than 80 confirmed cases.
Nandi has begun preparing five subcounty hospitals as isolation centres with a total of 300 beds for Covid-19 patients.
Sang said on Sunday that the county has also finalised training 1,300 medical staff to handle Covid-19 cases.
The governor said subcounty hospitals in Nandi Hills, Tinderet, Kabiyet, Kobujoi and Chesume will each have 75 beds, bringing the total to 300 well-equipped units.
Three weeks ago President Uhuru Kenyatta hosted governors at State House to assess Covid-19 preparedness. They agreed that each county should have at least 300 beds.
“We have decided that instead of having the beds in one place, we will share them in all the subcounties, so they are also closer to the communities,” Sang said.
He said the units will be well-equipped so they can handle other healthcare needs once the Covid-19 curve flattens.
The county chief said Kapsabet County Referral Hospital will not entirely be used to handle Covid-19 so that it continues to serve patients with other medical needs.
However, the new ICU unit is equipped with ventilators that are required for handling critical Covid-19 patients.
“If we make the county referral hospital a Covid-19 facility, then we will be denying residents with other challenges access to healthcare at the main facility,” Sang said.
Sang said residents were being sensitised on control measures such as handwashing, wearing masks and social distancing.
The governor said medical staff had also been provided with adequate protection materials and equipment.
The county had also developed a protocol prohibiting more than two medics from handling each Covid-19 patient.
(edited by o. owino)