Govt urged to increase COVID-19 testing capacity in devolved units

Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga has urged the National Government to increase the testing capacity for Covid-19 and release the results rapidly.

Kahiga says testing and getting results promptly is the only way to stop the spread of Covid-19 in the counties.

The Governor spoke after receiving AMREF Country director (Health) Dr Meshack Ndirangu who had paid him a courtesy call in his Nyeri office.

Kahiga at the same time disclosed that the original two cases from the County that had turned positive have now tested negative twice adding that results for the three health care workers who had tested positive are now negative.

The county has so far recorded ten cases of COVID 19.

“The original two who had turned positive have now turned negative twice and our three medical workers have turned negative and this gives us hope that testing positive is not a death sentence,” Kahiga said.

He urged people not to stigmatize anybody recovering from the disease adding that he was aware of a case where people have tested positive and after recovering, the community did not receive them well.

Kahiga said Nyeri County has heightened preparedness in anticipation of increased Covid-19 cases in the region as directed by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

He disclosed that the County has set aside 350 beds in three isolation centres at Mt Kenya hospital with 40, Nyeri KMTC with180 and Mukurwe-ini level three hospital which has 130 beds.

He said Othaya level Six Hospital has a capacity of  close to 100 beds and if need arose it would also be used.

Kahiga further said that the County has 19 ventilators and six beds in ICU adding that the County has received Ksh 125 million covid-19 boost from the National Government and has raised its health budget to Ksh 2.8 billion in this financial year.

Kahiga said reopening of the economy should be gradual noting that it has proved difficult for adults to maintain social distancing.

“Children are very difficult to manage. If we allow them in schools without testing them, their teachers not tested, that is a recipe for disaster,” the Governor posed.



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