Nurse succumbs to Covid-19 in Mombasa

Health workers put on personal protection equipment before burying their colleague on July 13, 2020. 

Photo credit: File | AFP

A Mombasa nurse succumbed to Covid-19 on Tuesday.

Officials said the health worker developed breathing difficulties and was rushed to a Likoni hospital where she died.

Following her death, several of her colleagues were put on isolation to curb the spread of the virus.

The body of the nurse will ferried to her rural home in Nyeri for burial. The nurse worked for many years at the Coast General Teaching and Referral Hospital before she was transferred to Likoni Sub-county Hospital.

“We are sad following the demise of our colleague due to the virus. The county government has neglected the medical fraternity during this pandemic. We have been demanding for PPEs and our September salaries, but they have remained silent,” Kenya National Union of Nurses Mombasa branch chairman Peter Maroko said.

The union official claimed healthcare staff have been working without basic personal protecting gears including face masks.

The nurses now want the Ministry of Health to come to their aid.

Speaking to the Nation, Mr Maroko said since Friday last week, he has received cases of three nurses who have contracted the virus in Likoni.

He claimed the government is not doing its job.

“Nurses are contracting the virus while at work. Health workers cannot access basic equipment like masks thereby exposing them to the virus,” he added.

He said he got a complaint from Mvita Health Centre about medics who are working without face masks. 

“Some PPEs are not up to standard and are exposing our workers to the virus. Nurses are demoralised,” he added.

Efforts to reach county officials to comment on the claims were futile. 

Mombasa County has recorded over 3,000 Covid-19 cases so far.

The county was recently flagged as one of the regions that have recorded increasing Covid-19 as residents continue to flout health protocols.

County health officials blamed residents for the high infections saying majority of them lowered their guard immediately the government announced that the port city had flattened the curve.

“This lead to total disregard of Covid-19 protocols including washing of hands, sanitising, social distancing and wearing of face masks,” Mombasa chief health officer Pauline Oginga said two weeks ago.