Home Disease CoronaVirus (COVID-19) Kenya staring at crisis as ICU beds fill with COVID-19 cases

Kenya staring at crisis as ICU beds fill with COVID-19 cases

Kenya could be headed for disaster as the number of COVID-19 patients needing ICU admission keeps rising.

Health Minister, Mutahi Kagwe, said that that there had been a sharp rise in cases which would likely stretch our health facilities in the coming days.

High ICU cases

Kagwe was speaking while giving an update of the National Emergency Response Committee.

“We are witnessing high ICU cases in Isiolo and other counties. The key to success is ensuring that hospitals are not overwhelmed,” Kagwe said.

Kenya has seen a spike in COVID-19 cases over the past two weeks, with the country confirming its highest figure yesterday. Kenya saw 1,068 new COVID cases on October 22, passing the 960 reported in July’s peak. Counties other than Nairobi and Mombasa, are seeing a sharp rise in cases. Uasin Gishu, Nakuru and Isiolo are all racing to the top, reporting record cases daily.

Recently, a doctor revealed that Kenya’s second largest referral hospital, Moi Teaching and Referral, was getting full with COVID patients.

Furthermore, Kenyatta University Hospital also revealed yesterday that 15 of its 24 ICU beds were occupied by COVID-19 patients.

Crisis unfolding in Kenya

On the other hand, Nairobi Hospital stated that they would set aside four wards for coronavirus cases. Acting CEO for the Hospital, Margaret Sirima, revealed this in an internal memo to staff.

The rise in COVID-19 cases also posed a rising risk to the already vulnerable health workers. Kenya Medical Association President, Andrew Were, said more health workers were now at risk of contracting coronavirus.

An ICU bed requires staff,” he said, “Some counties do not have the capacity to hire the required employees, let alone getting beds. Many health workers are now at risk of contracting the virus.”

Kenya now has 47,212 confirmed COVID cases, with deaths rising to 870. Recoveries are at 33,050, a recovery rate of 70 %. That’s 10 % lower than Africa’s recovery rate.

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